Precipitins to Candida albicans in chronic mucocutaneous candidiasis studied by crossed immunoelectrophoresis with intermediate gel. Correlation with clinical and immunological findings.
The precipitating antibodies in the sera of fifteen patients with chronic mucocutaneous candidiasis were examined by crossed immunoelectrophoresis with intermediate gel. The method permitted identification and quantitation of precipitins against thirty-four of the seventy-eight known antigenic components of Candida albicans. The sera from every patient contained precipitins and the number of reactivities per serum ranged from two to thirty-nine. All patients had antibodies to antigen 78, a mannan–protein complex. Many sera also possessed antibodies to many other components of the organism, suggesting that some of the yeast cells had been disrupted in the patients' tissues. However, there were no precipitin profiles that characterized patients with specific forms of chronic candidiasis. Instead, in two cases, the antibody profiles appeared to be related to the patients' ability to develop humoral immune responses. Serial studies of patients during remissions and exacerbations showed that there were no consistent changes in antibody activities. The role of Candida precipitins in chronic candidiasis remains uncertain. Possible functions include prevention of dissemination of the infection from superficial sites, formation of immune complexes in superficial sites and suppression of cell-mediated immunity as suggested by in vitro tests.
Axelsen, NH; Kirkpatrick, CH; Buckley, RH
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