Within immunocompromised populations, the JC polyomavirus is the cause of the often-fatal disease Progressive Multifocal Leukoencephalopathy (PML). JC virus encodes a protein, termed T-antigen (T-ag), which is essential for its replication and pathogenicity. Previous studies of JCV T-ag have, in general, used antibodies raised against SV40 T-ag. Unfortunately, SV40 T-ag is also detected in humans and therefore there have been concerns about cross-reactivity. To address this issue, we have isolated a monoclonal antibody that binds to the JCV, but not the SV40, T-ag origin-binding domain (OBD). Furthermore, the region on the surface of the JCV T-ag OBD that is recognized by the "anti-JCV OBD mAb" has been mapped. We also demonstrate that the "anti-JCV OBD mAb" will be a useful reagent for standard techniques (e.g., Westerns blots and ELISAs). Finally, we note that additional monoclonal Abs that are specific for the T-ags encoded by the other human polyomaviruses could be generated by adopting the approach described herein.
Keywords: JCV; Monoclonal antibody; Polyomavirus.
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