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Semin Respir Infect. 1998 Dec;13(4):313-22.

Antigenic characterization of Pneumocystis carinii.

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University of Rochester School of Medicine & Dentistry, NY 14642, USA.


Studies of Pneumocystis carinii have been limited by our inability to propagate it in continuous culture. In this context, studies of P. carinii antigens have provided significant insight into the biology of this organism. The mannose-rich surface major surface glycoprotein of P. carinii termed glycoprotein A (gpA) is the best studied of these P. carinii antigens. Significant genetic and immunologic diversity exists between the gpA molecules expressed by P. carinii derived from different mammalian sources. The molecular and biochemical nature of gpA and other P. carinii antigens including p55 are reviewed. In addition, available information concerning the role of P. carinii gpA and other antigens in host-organism interactions are also discussed.

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