A number of antigens in unfertilized eggs and embryos of the sea urchin Paracentrotus lividus were characterized with respect to both immunological and physicochemical properties. Experiments involved single diffusion in agar (Oudin technique) combined with mutual dilution, serial dilution, and heating of antigenic extracts, as well as immunoelectrophoresis with normal and heated extracts and agar electrophoresis followed by staining of the antigenic spots with protein specific dyes. The gradual transition in migration rates of bands of precipitates in Oudin tubes following mutual dilution of either extracts or antisera allowed the identification of 6 immunologically identical antigens in eggs and embryonic stages. Similarities with respect to diffusion coefficients, sensitivity to heat, electrophoretic mobility, and reaction to protein specific dyes indicated that the antigens in extracts of eggs and various developmental stages also had certain physicochemical properties in common. Such knowledge is of importance for an understanding of antigenic changes occurring during ontogenesis.

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