Recombinant plasmids for intracellular synthesis of mature porcine interferon alpha 1 (IFN-α1) in were constructed. High amounts of antiviral activity were obtained [up to 4 × 10 international units (IU) per ml of bacterial culture]. Recombinant porcine IFN-α1 (IFN-α1) was purified to homogeneity by monoclonal antibody immunoaffinity and was found to have the expected (17.5K) and N-terminal sequence (except for the apparent lack of an N-terminal methionine). Its specific antiviral activity was 5 × 10 to 10 × 10 IU/mg MDBK cells. biological properties of this purified rIFN-α1 were compared to those of virus-induced porcine leukocyte interferon: the two interferons shared similar antigenic determinants and had the same ability to induce a cytocidal effect on primary cultures of pig kidney epithelial cells. However, rIFN-α1 was at least six times more active in inducing an antiviral state on homologous porcine cells. These properties are discussed in the light of a possible use of the purified recombinant molecule.


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