Swine cell binding analyses of a set of 48 monoclonal antibodies (II Abs), including eleven standards, assigned to the CD44 and CD45 subset group of the Second International Swine CD Workshop yielded 13 clusters. Although none of these corresponded to CD44, seven mAbs formed a cluster which was identified as being specific for restricted epitopes of CD45 (CD45R). In addition, a T-cell subset specific cluster comprised of four mAbs was also identified. Two mAbs (STH106 and SwNL 554.1) reacted exclusively with CDS bright lymphocytes, the other two (2B11 and F01G9) with a subset of CD4 lymphocytes. The other 10 clusters were either specific for MHC-class I like molecules or overlapped with clusters identified by the adhesion molecule subgroup and are therefore just briefly discussed in this report. The specificity of all the mAbs in the CD45R cluster was verified by their ability to immunoprecipitate distinct proteins and to react with CHO cells expressing individual isoforms of CD45. Three CD45R mAbs (3a56,MILS, -a2) did react with a 210 kDa isoform(s), while another three (STH267, FG2F9, 6E3/7) only recognized a 226 kDa isoform(s). The remaining one (MAC326) precipitated both a 210 and 226 kDa protein. The specificity of all the mAbs in the CD45R cluster, and of the CD45 common mAbs, was confirmed by their reactivity with CHO cells transfected with cDNAs encoding the extracellular and transmembrane portions of distinct CD45R isoforms. Those mAbs recognizing a 210 kDa protein reacted with CHO cells expressing the CD45RC isoform, while those capable of precipitating a 226 kDa, but not the 210 kDa, polypeptide recognized CHO cells expressing either the CD45RAC and the relatively rare CD45RA isoform. MAC326 was unique in its inability to react with CHO cells engineered to produce the CD45RC and CD45RAC isoforms. Thus, three mAbs (6E3/7, STH267, and FG2F9) appear to be specific for an epitope(s) encoded by the A exon, while one (MAC326) recognizes a determinant encoded by the C exon. The remaining three mAbs (3a56, -a2, MIL5) are apparently specific for an epitope(s) which results from the fusion of the C exon to the invariant leader sequence and is destroyed by inclusion of the A exon. All three CD45 common mAbs, K252.1E4, MAC323 and 74.9.3. did react with the CHO cells lines expressing either the CD45RA: CD45RC, CD45RAC or CD45RO isoforms, but not with untransfected CHO cells. When the natural expression of CD45 isoforms was examined by reacting lymphocytes with CD;I SR mAbs, a high level expression of isoforms containing the A axon-generated domain was detected in all B cells while the majority of CD4(+) T cells had undetectable or lower expression density of this protein than B cells. In contrast, the density of expression of the CD45 isoform(s) containing the C exon-generated domain ranged from undetectable to high in CD4(+) T cells whereas the amounts were approximately ten-fold lower in B cells. Overall this panel of CD45 mAbs will be very useful in analyzing the maturation and differentiation of swine lymphoid cells subsets. (C) 1998 Elsevier Science B.V.