Discovery of Specific Antigens That Can Predict Microfilarial Intensity in Loa loa Infection.
Antigen-based immunoassays are currently needed for point-of-care quantification of Loa loa microfilariae (mf). Coupling transcriptomic approaches with bioinformatic analysis, we have identified 11 specific putative proteins (coding mRNAs) with potential utility as biomarkers of patent (mf + ) L. loa infection. We successfully developed antigen capture immunoassays to quantify 2 (LOAG_14221 and LOAG_15846) of these proteins in individual plasma/serum samples. Of the 2 quantifiable circulating biomarkers, LOAG_14221 showed the highest degree of specificity, particularly with a monoclonal antibody-based immunoassay. Moreover, the levels of LOAG_14221 in L. loa mf + patients were positively correlated to the mf densities in the corresponding blood samples (r = 0.53 and P = 0.008 for polyclonal assay; r = 0.54 and P = 0.004 for monoclonal assay). Thus, LOAG_14221 is a very promising biomarker that will be exploited in a quantitative point-of-care immunoassay for determination of L. loa mf densities.
Drame, PM; Bennuru, S; Nutman, TB
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