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Blood. 1991 Mar 15;77(6):1203-10.

Evidence for the location of the receptor-binding site of human erythropoietin at the carboxyl-terminal domain.

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  • 1Behringwerke AG, Marburg, Germany.


Five different peptides (P1: 84-95; P2: 152-166; P3: 52-63; P4: 7-23; P5: 110-123) homologous to relatively hydrophilic regions of human erythropoietin (huEpo) have been synthesized to identify biologically active domains of the hormone. All peptides were able to induce high titers of peptide-specific antibodies in rabbits. Antisera from rabbits induced by recombinant huEpo (rhuEpo) contained a relatively high amount of antibodies preferentially directed against three peptides (P2, P4, and P5), of which P4 comprised the amino-terminal region, P2 the carboxyl-terminus, and P5 an interior region previously described as the receptor-binding site. The same three peptides were able to induce rhuEpo-specific antibodies, whereas P1 and P3 lacked this activity. Only peptide-P2-induced antisera inhibited the biologic activity of rhuEpo in a cell proliferation assay, indicating that the carboxyl-terminal region of the molecule is essentially involved in the biologic function of rhuEpo.

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