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Heterophile specificity is determined by the presence of heterophile antigens. The same or closely related antigens, sometimes present in tissues of different biological spe-cies, classes, or kingdoms are known as heterophile antigens. Antibodies against the heterophile antigens produced by one of the species cross-react with the antigens of other species. This property is exploited for diagnosis of many infectious diseases. Weil–Felix reaction, Paul-Bunnell test, and cold agglutination tests are the examples of serological tests that use such heterophile antigens.
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