Summary: Monoclonal antibody 69/25, specific for the fimbrial antigen (SEF14), was used to screen a pUC-based gene library and a positive clone was identified. Subcloning experiments demonstrated that a 584 bp I DNA fragment was the minimal chromosomal segment capable of directing SEF14 antigen expression. Western blotting of recombinants identified a gene product of M 16000 as a precursor to the 14300 mature fimbrial subunit protein. The DNA nucleotide sequence of the I fragment was determined and was shown to contain a single open reading frame with two potential f-Met start codons and a hydrophobic signal sequence. Downstream of a putative peptidase cleavage site, the deduced amino acid sequence showed considerable homology with the N-terminal amino acid sequence of what was originally described as the type 1 fimbrial subunit of and later redefined as SEF14. The gene encoding SEF14, designated as was shown to be limited in distribution to and all belonging to group D. However, expression of the SEF14 antigen was limited to and The nucleotide sequence of the gene shared no homology with the gene encoding type 1 fimbriae, and these genes showed distinct patterns of distribution within salmonellae.


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