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Mol Biochem Parasitol. 1989 Mar 15;33(3):229-35.

Onchocerca volvulus heat shock protein 70 is a major immunogen in amicrofilaremic individuals from a filariasis-endemic area.

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Department of Microbiology, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, NY.


Infestation with organisms causing lymphatic filariasis (i.e. Wuchereria bancrofti and Brugia malayi) results in a variety of clinical presentations. It is possible that some of the variation is due to differences in host response to parasite. To determine whether individuals who live in an endemic area but differ in their clinical manifestations respond to different filarial antigens, we screened Onchocerca volvulus expression libraries with sera from a number of individuals belonging to different clinical groups. The results of the study demonstrate that there are indeed differences in the recognition of three cloned filarial antigens and that this differential recognition is related to clinical symptomatology. The most striking finding is that an Onchocerca volvulus protein homologous to the 70 kDa Xenopus laevis heat shock protein is primarily recognized by individuals who are amicrofilaremic. Further analysis is required to determine whether these antigens play any role in the pathogenesis of filarial infection or have any potential value in protective immunity.

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