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Gene. 1992 Jan 15;110(2):137-44.

Hepatitis B virus envelope epitopes: gene assembly and expression in Escherichia coli of an immunologically reactive novel multiple-epitope polypeptide 1 (MEP-1).

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Virology Laboratory, International Centre for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology, New Delhi, India.


A novel synthetic 323-bp gene with the open reading frame of a multiple-epitope polypeptide has been assembled and cloned. The gene is engineered by contiguous alignment of selected epitopes and functional domains of the hepatitis B virus envelope proteins separated by pairs of glycine residues. High-level bacterial production of this 100-amino acid (approx. 10 kDa) protein has been achieved and the gene product is stable. ELISA and Western blot experiments using epitope-specific antisera confirm that the corresponding epitopes are present in the engineered protein.

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