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A low-molecular-weight recombinant Brucella abortus protein reactive with antibodies from a variety of naturally and experimentally infected hosts and T lymphocytes from experimentally infected mice was identified and given the designation BA14K. The gene encoding BA14K was cloned and characterized, and the predicted amino acid sequence of this immunoreactive protein showed no significant homology with previously described proteins. Sequences homologous to the cloned fragment encoding BA14K were identified by Southern blot analysis of genomic DNAs from representatives of all of the currently recognized Brucella species. Studies employing BA14K should contribute to our efforts to better understand the antigenic specificity of protective immunity to brucellosis.

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Infection and Immunity

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