Sera from 26 rats bearing tumours induced by wild-type (wt) and mutant human adenovirus type 12 (Ad12), or by cells transformed with these viruses, were analysed for antibodies against the early region 1 (E1) transforming proteins. Six Ad12--galactosidase fusion proteins encoding different regions of the Ad12 E1 proteins were constructed. The sera from the tumour-bearing animals reacted most strongly with the fusion protein encoding the N terminus of the E1A protein. Tumour-bearing rats exposed to the E1B 54K and 19K proteins showed strong reactions with the N terminus of the 54K protein and the C terminus of the 19K protein. Monospecific polyclonal antisera were raised against five of the fusion proteins by immunization of rats and rabbits; these sera cross-reacted with the purified native protein. No antibodies could be obtained which recognized a fusion protein containing amino acids 136 to 268 of the 54K protein. The fusion proteins were also used to purify monospecific antisera from tumour-bearer sera using affinity chromatography.


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