In order to locate amino acid residues involved in the formation of feline calicivirus (FCV) neutralizing epitopes, we analysed the capsid protein gene of monoclonal antibody neutralization-resistant variants of FCV. Amino acid substitutions in the variants were identified in the two hypervariable regions of the capsid protein. Four linear and two conformational epitopes were located in the regions from residues 426 to 460 and 490 to 520, respectively. The relative positions of individual epitopes agreed with our previous antigenic analysis. Two antigenic sites composed of the neutralizing epitopes were mapped in the hypervariable regions of the capsid protein, demonstrating that a relationship exists between the genetic variability and antigenic differences in the neutralization of FCV.


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