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Microbios. 1992;71(286):55-64.

Cell surface saccharide differences in drug-susceptible and drug-resistant strains of Trichomonas vaginalis.

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Instituto de Microbiologia, Carlos Chagas Filho Universidade, Federal do Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.


Surface carbohydrates of drug-resistant and drug-susceptible strains of Trichomonas vaginalis were analysed using lectins. The presence of D-GalNAc, D-Gal and mannose-like residues was detected in T. vaginalis. Marked differences in exposed surface carbohydrates were documented, e.g. wheat germ agglutinin (WGA) selectively agglutinated the drug-susceptible strain whereas drug-resistant parasites reacted preferentially with concanavalin A (Con A). In drug-resistant, but not in drug-susceptible strains, trypsinization induced the appearance of soybean agglutinin. Binding studies using fluorescein-labelled WGA and Con A essentially confirmed the agglutination experiments. Both the intense cell agglutination and the fluorescent WGA-binding displayed by a drug-susceptible strain, were completely nullified by neuraminidase treatment, suggesting the presence of an exposed sialic acid moiety on the T. vaginalis surface.

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