Human mAb were produced from tonsillar or PBL of normal individuals or patients infected with group A streptococci. Lymphocytes were purified on Ficoll-Hypaque gradients and stimulated in vitro with purified group A streptococcal membranes or M protein extracts. The mAb were selected for study based on their reaction with group A streptococci, pep M5 protein, and/or M6 Escherichia coli protein. Further analysis by Western immunoblot or competitive inhibition ELISA revealed that there were two types of antibodies: one type that reacted with myosin and DNA and the other type that reacted with myosin, keratin, and/or actin. The specificities of these human mAb are similar to specificities observed in our previous studies of murine mAb reactive with group A streptococci and heart Ag. For comparison, anti-myosin antibodies were affinity purified from the sera of infected or acute rheumatic fever patients and were shown to react with myosin and DNA as well as with group A streptococci and M protein. To affinity purify these antibodies from normal sera, five times the amount of sera was required to obtain detectable quantities. These data suggest that the human mAb reactive with group A streptococci and myosin reflect the antibodies seen in sera from infected patients or acute rheumatics and that the B lymphocyte clones capable of producing these cross-reactive antibodies are also present in normal individuals.

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