Current commercial hepatitis B virus (HBV) anti-HBe immunoassays are designed so that anti-HBe is detectable only in the absence of excess HBeAg. Recently, with the use of direct anti-HBe assays, anti-HBe was detected in individuals who had been seropositive for several years for HBeAg [Maruyama et al. (1993) J. Clin. Invest. 91:2586-2595]. Although anti-HBe seroconversion does not necessarily indicate subsequent HBeAg clearance, the ability to detect earlier anti-HBe seroconversion could have clinical significance for monitoring patients undergoing HBV immunotherapy (e.g., α interferon therapy). Because the HBeAg and the HBcAg share 149 amino acids, an anti-HBe assay must distinguish anti-HBe from anti-HBc antibodies. Although the HBV HBeAg and HBcAg display distinct immunogenic determinants, much remains unknown regarding the complete epitope spectrum specific to each antigen. The goal of this study was 3-fold. The first objective was to identify HBeAg specific linear epitopes. The second objective was to design an anti-HBe immunoassay capable of detecting anti-HBe specific antibody in the presence of excess HBeAg. The third objective was to characterize early anti-HBe seroconversion antibodies. The major linear epitope residing in the HBeAg amino acid sequence was mapped and 2 novel minor epitopes (δ, γ) which appear to be HBeAg specific have been identified. An anti-HBe immunoassay capable of detecting anti-HBe specific antibody in the presence of excess HBeAg was designed. Finally, it was found that early anti-HBe seroconversion antibodies appear to be conformational, whereas later seroconversion, more typically associated with the clearance of HBeAg, is characterized by the presence of antibodies to the linear HBeAg epitopes.
|Número de páginas||8|
|Publicación||Journal of Medical Virology|
|Estado||Publicada - 2000|
Áreas temáticas de ASJC Scopus
- Enfermedades infecciosas