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Dev Biol Stand. 1985;61:143-51.

The location of surface antigens of Bordetella pertussis by immuno-electron microscopy.


Immuno-electron microscopy using colloidal gold-tagged monoclonal antibodies (McAbs) has been used to detect antigens on the surface of Bordetella pertussis cells. McAbs to serotype-specific agglutinogens 2 and 3 labelled fimbriae in a serotype-specific manner. An attempt was made to determine whether individual fimbriae of serotype 1.2.3 cells bear both antigens 2 and 3. In double labelling experiments, individual cells were found to label with McAbs to antigen 2 (3 nm gold) and to antigen 3 (15 nm gold). Many fimbriae labelled with only one of these reagents, but there were instances where both labels could have been attached to the same fimbria. No fimbrial labelling was obtained with McAb to agglutinogen 1. Gold-tagged McAbs to filamentous haemagglutinin (FHA) labelled neither the fimbriae nor the surface of B. pertussis cells. Unfixed cells on electron microscope grids appeared to shed FHA readily. After fixation, a small proportion of cells bore aggregates of FHA which labelled specifically with anti-FHA McAb-gold. Results with one McAb to lymphocytosis promoting factor indicated that this antigen may be more intimately associated with the surface of B. pertussis than is FHA.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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