Fresh human peripheral blood lymphocytes were induced with desacetylthymosin -alpha 1 and staphylococcal enterotoxin B. The induced gamma interferon (or IFN-gamma, immune interferon, type II interferon) was purified to homogeneity utilizing controlled-pore glass, concanavalin A-Sepharose, Bio-Gel P100, or Sephacryl S-200, and reversed phase high performance liquid chromatography. This procedure resulted in two active species with apparent Mr = 20,000 and 25,000 as judged by sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis. Both species were found to have identical amino acid sequences with a pyroglutamate residue as NH2-terminus. In both cases six different COOH termini were found. They are, at least qualitatively, identical in both species. There are two possible Asn-X-Ser/Thr glycosylation sites. Both carry carbohydrates in the Mr = 25,000 species whereas in the Mr = 20,000 species only one site is glycosylated. This likely explains the difference in apparent molecular weight between the two species and the expected molecular weight based upon the amino acid sequence.

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