Polyclonal and monoclonal anti-human IL 1 alpha antibodies (Ab) have been established. These Ab neutralized human recombinant IL 1 alpha (rIL 1 alpha) activity effectively, but did not interfere with human rIL 1 beta, murine rIL 1 alpha, or human rIL 2 activity. Fifty percent of rIL 1 alpha activity (25 U/ml, or 2.5 ng/ml) was neutralized by less than 0.06 microgram/ml of rabbit anti-IL 1 alpha Ab (R-38.3G) and by less than 0.13 microgram/ml of monoclonal Ab (clone 28(3B1], respectively. In other experiments, 10 micrograms/ml of rabbit anti-IL 1 alpha Ab could effectively neutralize 50% of 2000 U of rIL 1 alpha activity, and the same amount of monoclonal Ab neutralized 50% of 500 U/ml of rIL 1 alpha activity. Not only IL 1 alpha activity in the thymocyte costimulator assay, but also IL 1-dependent IL 2 production by a human leukemic cell line, HSB.2 subclone, were blocked by these polyclonal or monoclonal Ab. In addition, pI 4.9 IL 1 activity produced by the myelomonocytic cell line THP-1 and by the Epstein-Barr virus-transformed B cell lines, were neutralized by these Ab, suggesting that these cell lines also produce IL 1 alpha. The specificity of these polyclonal and monoclonal Ab was further confirmed by immunochemical method (Western blotting), in which anti-IL 1 alpha Ab reacted with rIL 1 alpha in a specific manner. Furthermore, an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay system has been developed that can detect low levels of IL 1 alpha activity (less than 0.3 ng/ml or less than 3 U/ml), which is still less sensitive than thymocyte comitogenic assay and considerably less sensitive than the D10 assay. Finally, anti-IL 1 alpha Ab-conjugated affinity columns were prepared, by which IL 1 alpha activity, but not IL 1 beta activity, was specifically adsorbed and eluted effectively.

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