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Mol Biochem Parasitol. 1988 Dec;31(3):263-72.

The identification and partial characterization of an immunodominant 29-31 kilodalton surface antigen expressed by adult worms of the human filaria Loa loa.

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International Centre for Medical Research (CIRMF), Franceville, Gabon.


Detergent solubilized extracts of 125Iodogen surface labelled adult Loa loa revealed a relatively simple profile consisting of a strongly labelled molecule at 29-31 kDa and weakly labelled molecules at 14.5, 17, 21, 23, 34, 58, and 86 kDa. Residents of a L. loa endemic zone were assessed clinically and parasitologically and classified as microfilaremic, amicrofilaremic with documented ocular passage of adult worms, or 'resistant' subjects without any signs of infection. Sera from these subjects were used to identify L. loa adult surface antigens. All 'resistant' sera immunoprecipitated the 29-31 kDa antigen although some were more strongly reactive than others. The amicrofilaremic sera strongly immunoprecipitated the 29-31 kDa antigen, whereas microfilaremic sera reacted weakly or not at all with this antigen. Longer exposures of immunoprecipitates of strongly reactive sera revealed the recognition of additional antigens of 86, 44, 34, 23, 21, 17 and 14.5 kDa. Studies with heterologous sera demonstrated that these antigens contain cross-reactive epitopes which are restricted to filarial parasites. Biochemical characterization of the predominant 29-31 kDa antigen showed that it bound concanavalin A, was sensitive to proteases, and its antigenicity was resistant to heat but sensitive to periodate and endo-beta-N-acetylglucosaminidase H. These observations suggest that it is a glycoprotein containing mannose and N-acetylglucosamine residues and that the carbohydrate moiety is important for antibody binding. The importance of the 29-31 kDa glycoprotein in the immunobiology of loaiasis is suggested by the finding that resistant and infected amicrofilaremic individuals have strongly reactive IgG antibodies to this antigen.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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