Monoclonal antibodies were generated to a purified preparation of the fascia adherens domains of the intercalated discs of chicken cardiac cell membranes. One of these antibodies, McAb 20, immunofluorescently labeled the Z lines of adult skeletal muscle, the Z lines and intercalated discs of adult cardiac muscle, and the dense bodies and dense plaques of adult gizzard smooth muscle. In addition, McAb 20 was found to label regenerating muscle cells in a cross-striated pattern much like that of Z lines in 24-h muscle cell cultures before the appearance of Z lines was detectable by phase or Nomarski optics and before the concentration of alpha-actinin occurred at the Z lines. Thus, McAb 20 appears to be directed against an antigen involved in early myofibrillar organization. Preliminary biochemical characterization of the antigen recognized by McAb 20 indicates that it is a high molecular weight doublet of over 5 X 10(5) kD that is highly susceptible to proteolysis. By virtue of its presence in Z lines, and its possible role in the end-on attachment of microfilaments to Z lines and membranes, we have named this protein zeugmatin (xi epsilon nu gamma mu alpha identical to yoking).

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