Haemagglutinating (HA) antigens of four strains of virus related to that causing haemorrhagic fever with renal syndrome (HFRS) were prepared from infected tissue culture fluids by ultracentrifugation. The titres of the precipitated antigens were increased considerably by acetone extraction and sonication. Acetone extraction completely inactivated infectious virus in the antigen preparations. The antigens were pH-dependent, with pH optima at 5.8. Good correlations were observed in human and rat sera between the titres obtained by the haemagglutination-inhibition (HI) test and an indirect fluorescent antibody test. Moreover, strong cross-reactions among these strains were demonstrated by the HI test. The HI test has not been used previously with HFRS viruses because of the danger involved in preparing HA antigen, but these results indicate that a safe method is available for serological identification of HFRS.

Keyword(s): haemagglutinin , HFRS virus and HI test

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