Six murine monoclonal antibodies raised against a major human adult liver cytochrome P-450 (P-450) of the PCN family (P450III) detected a protein in human foetal liver microsomes (microsomal fractions) which had an approx. 1 kDa higher molecular mass on SDS/polyacrylamide-gel electrophoresis than the protein recognized in human adult liver microsomes. Although each of the antibodies recognized both the adult and the foetal forms, antibody HL4 showed higher affinity for the foetal form. Recognition by the monoclonal antibodies of peptides generated by proteolytic cleavage of microsomal proteins showed different patterns for the adult and foetal forms. It is concluded that the foetal P-450 form recognized by antibodies to the major human adult liver form P450hA7, although structurally similar, is either a distinct P-450 isoenzyme or that the adult and foetal proteins have different covalent modification. Immunoquantification experiments showed comparable levels of the P-450 forms in adult and foetal liver, although there appeared to be less inter-individual variation in foetal livers.

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