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J Immunol Methods. 1994 Nov 10;176(1):93-101.

Development of a whole blood assay to measure T cell responses to leprosy: a new tool for immuno-epidemiological field studies of leprosy immunity.

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London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, UK.


A whole blood assay is described to measure T cell mediated immune responses to leprosy and provide an alternative to the conventional lymphocyte transformation test. Optimal conditions were defined for the whole blood assay, and interferon-gamma measurement was found to be a more sensitive way of measuring responses than tritiated thymidine incorporation. The assay was shown to be useful for investigating responses to a range of leprosy antigens. A whole blood assay has the advantages of being quick, simple and requiring only a small volume of blood, making it more appropriate as an immuno-epidemiological field test in leprosy endemic areas.

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