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Infect Immun. 1988 Sep;56(9):2363-8.

Identification of Babesia bovis merozoite surface antigens by using immune bovine sera and monoclonal antibodies.

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Animal Disease Research Unit, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Pullman, Washington 99164-7030.


Three Babesia bovis merozoite surface proteins with relative molecular weights of 37,000, 42,000, and 60,000 were identified by indirect immunofluorescence of live merozoites and by immunoprecipitation of 125I-surface-labeled merozoite proteins with immune bovine sera and monoclonal antibodies. These proteins were clearly of parasite origin, as evidenced by immunoprecipitation of metabolically labeled [( 35S]methionine) merozoites from cultures with specific antimerozoite monoclonal antibodies. In addition, two other proteins were identified with these methods. An 85-kilodalton protein was considered to be of parasite origin based on fluorescence reactivity with a monoclonal antibody. However, this protein was not detected after immunoprecipitation of metabolically labeled parasites, and thus, the exact nature of its origin is equivocal. A fifth protein of 145 kilodaltons was detected by immunoprecipitation after metabolic labeling but was not directly apparent on the surfaces of live merozoites. Since merozoite surface proteins may be important in the induction of protective immunity, those identified here are candidates for vaccine studies.

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