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MEMBRANE-ASSOCIATED FETAL ANTIGEN IN RAT HEPATOMA

XU YONG-HUA,TSUNG HSIAO-CHIEN,PENG SU-FEN AND ZHANG YU-YAN (Shanghai Institute of Cell Biology,Academia Sinica)  
Purified antiserum against surfaceantigens extracted from 10—15 daysfetal rat cells with 3M KCl-PBSwas used to compare the immune reactions of cells of fetal rat liver,pri-mary rat hepatoma and rat transplan-table hepatoma BERH-2 induced byDEN and normal rat liver by unla-belled immunoperoxidase method.The results showed that there existeda membrane-associated fetal antigenin rat hepatoma which was also pre-sent on cell surface and in cytoplasmof fetal liver at different developmen-tal stages with varying intensity.Theimmunoenzymatic reaction was stron-ger in 13—14 day fetal liver (fig.1)than 19 day fetal liver (fig.2).Inthe liver of new-born rat,the antigenwas still positive on the surface.Itwas decreased or disappeared in nor-mal adult rat liver (fig.7) and re-appeared in hepatomas.(figs.3—5)Positive reaction could be observedon the surface of BERH-2 cells withboth unlabelled immunoperoxidasemethod and immunofluorescence me-thod (fig.5a,b).The section of aprimary hepatoma nodule gave posi-tive immunoenzyme reaction on thecell surface,but as a natural control,the host liver cells around this tumornodule were weak or negative in immunoenzyme reaction (fig.3).Whenthe section of hepatoma BERH-2 wastreated with specific antiserum to α-fetoprotein,the cytoplasm of hepatoma cells showed strong positiveimmunoenzyme reaction (fig.8).Theresults suggested that the antigen wedetected was a membrane-associatedfetal antigen different from α-fetopro-tein.
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