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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

NZB mouse system for production of monoclonal antibodies to weak bacterial antigens: isolation of an IgG antibody to the polysaccharide capsules of Escherichia coli K1 and group B meningococci.

A system for the production of monoclonal antibodies, particularly of the IgG type, against weakly immunogenic bacterial polysaccharide antigens is described. This system, which is based on the autoimmune NZB mouse strain, has been used to produce a monoclonal IgG2a antibody against the meningococcus group B and Escherichia coli K1 polysaccharides, identical homopolymers of alpha (2----8)-linked units of N-acetylneuraminic acid that are extremely poor immunogens. Comparison of the humoral immune responses of normal BALB/c mice and autoimmune NZB mice to hyperimmunization with group A, B, and C meningococci showed that, although both strains mounted a weak meningococcal B polysaccharide-specific IgM response, only the NZB strain mounted an IgG response. Similarly, NZB mice mounted a stronger IgG response to the more immunogenic group C meningococcal polysaccharide than did BALB/c mice, although this difference was less pronounced than that observed with meningococcal B polysaccharide. No difference between the two strains of mice was demonstrable with the strongly antigenic group A meningococcal polysaccharide. These results indicate that the NZB system may be generally useful for the production of monoclonal antibodies against weakly antigenic bacterial determinants.[1]


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