Lipopolysaccharide-binding protein (LBP) is important for mediating host responses to lipopolysaccharide (LPS). The structure and properties of human, rabbit, and murine LBP have been previously described. In this study we partially characterized baboon LBP and investigated its appearance in experimental sepsis. Recurrent bacteremia was induced in baboons by infusion of live Escherichia coli organisms over a 2-hour period at 0, 24, and 48 hours. To assay baboon plasma LBP levels, an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay with cross-reactive antibodies to human LBP was developed. Control baboon plasma LBP concentrations were 2 to 5 microg/mL. During experimental sepsis, baboon plasma LBP levels increased to between 200 and 350 microg/mL and in parallel with the increase in C-reactive protein levels. Baboon LBP was isolated from acute phase serum by ion-exchange chromatography followed by immuno-affinity chromatography. Its NH2-terminal sequence (XNPGLVARTTNKGLEYSAQE) and its molecular weight (approximately 60 kd) were determined and were proved to be highly homologous to human LBP.