a1 Cross-Infection Reference Laboratory, Central Public Health Laboratory, Colindale Avenue, London, NW 9 5HT
A streptococcal antigen that is closely associated with the M-antigen, but is not type specific can be detected by means of a complement-fixation test in extracts of M-positive, but not of M-negative, variants of group A streptococci. Purification of acid extracts results in a concomitant increase in the purity both of the type-specific M-antigen and of the M-associated protein (MAP). Antibody to MAP is present in the sera of patients who have had streptococcal infection. The highest titres are found in patients with rheumatic fever.
(Received April 26 1971)