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This article has been peer reviewed and is published in Hybridoma December 2011, 30(6): 503-510. The published version is available at DOI: doi:10.1089/hyb.2011.0032. ©Mary Ann Liebert, Inc


Botulinum neurotoxins (BoNTs) are extremely potent toxins that can contaminate foods and are a public health concern. Anti-BoNT antibodies have been described that are capable of detecting BoNTs; however there still exists a need for accurate and sensitive detection capabilities for BoNTs. Herein, we describe the characterization of a panel of eight monoclonal antibodies (MAbs) generated to the non-toxic receptor-binding domain of BoNT/A (H(C)50/A) developed using a high-throughput screening approach. In two independent hybridoma fusions, two groups of four IgG MAbs were developed against recombinant H(C)50/A. Of these eight, only a single MAb, F90G5-3, bound to the whole BoNT/A protein and was characterized further. The F90G5-3 MAb slightly prolonged time to death in an in vivo mouse bioassay and was mapped by pepscan to a peptide epitope in the N-terminal subdomain of H(C)50/A (H(CN)25/A) comprising amino acid residues (985)WTLQDTQEIKQRVVF(999), an epitope that is highly immunoreactive in humans. Furthermore, we demonstrate that F90G5-3 binds BoNT/A with nanomolar efficiency. Together, our results indicate that F90G5-3 is of potential value as a diagnostic immunoreagent for BoNT/A capture assay development and bio-forensic analysis.

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