Characterization of immunoreactive epitopes of the HIV-1 p41 envelope protein using fusion proteins synthesized in Escherichia coli

Michael G. Windheuser, Charles Wood

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

15 Scopus citations


We have identified several immunoreactive epitopes on the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) type 1 transmembrane envelope protein by synthesizing various regions of the protein as fusions to the trpE gene in Escherichia coli. Ten fusion clones which expressed overlapping peptides were found to contain epitopes reactive with antibodies in sera of North American (NAm) and West African (WAf) patients with acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS). An immunodominant epitope which reacted with all HIV-infected patients' sera was mapped to a 51-amino acid sequence in the N terminus of p41. A novel epitope was also identified in the C terminus of p41 which was reactive with 41% and 48% of the sera tested from NAm and WAf, respectively. In addition, several minor epitopes were identified. We observed that sera from WAf reacted more strongly to minor HIV-1 p41 epitopes than did sera from similarly infected individuals in NAm. We also report on the detection of antibodies from patients with HIV-2 infection in WAf which cross react with HIV-1 p41 recombinant envelope antigens.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)107-119
Number of pages13
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Apr 15 1988



  • AIDS
  • African sera
  • HIV-2 antibodies
  • Recombinant DNA
  • Western blot
  • cross reactivity
  • immunodot blot

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Genetics

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