Common Surface Epitope of Bartonella Bacilliformis and Chlamydia Psittaci

Jürgen KnoblochBernhard-Nocht-Institut für Tropenmedizin, Hamburg, Federal Republic of Germany

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Ralf BialekBernhard-Nocht-Institut für Tropenmedizin, Hamburg, Federal Republic of Germany

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Günther MüllerBernhard-Nocht-Institut für Tropenmedizin, Hamburg, Federal Republic of Germany

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Peter AsmusBernhard-Nocht-Institut für Tropenmedizin, Hamburg, Federal Republic of Germany

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A serosurvey revealed intense cross-reactivity between Bartonella bacilliformis and Chlamydia psittaci. One of the cross-reacting Bartonella antigens was identified as lipopolysaccharide which reacted with Bartonella as well as with Chlamydia serum antibodies. A monoclonal Bartonella antibody bound to Bartonella lipopolysaccharide as well as to the surfaces of Bartonella bacilliformis and Chlamydia psittaci. It was thus demonstrated that Chlamydia psittaci carries a surface epitope identical to an epitope of Bartonella lipopolysaccharide. The lipopolysaccharide was preliminarily characterized by polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis and by a lectin-binding assay. The lipopolysaccharides of Bartonella bacilliformis and Chlamydia psittaci are not identical.

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