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IgG4 specific to Toxoplasma gondii excretory/secretory antigens in serum and/or cerebrospinal fluid support the cerebral toxoplasmosis diagnosis in HIV-infected patients

IgG4 specific to Toxoplasma gondii excretory/secretory antigens in serum and/or cerebrospinal fluid support the cerebral toxoplasmosis diagnosis in HIV-infected patients

Journal of Immunological Methods 395(1-2): 21-28

Cerebral toxoplasmosis is the most common neurological opportunistic disease manifested in HIV infected patients. Excretory/secretory antigens (ESA) are serological markers for the diagnosis of reactivation of the infection in HIV-infected patients with cerebral toxoplasmosis. Immunosuppressed patients develop high antibody titers for ESA. However, little is known about the humoral response for these antigens. The present study analyzed the profile of antibody recognition against ESA in comparison with tachyzoite lysate antigen (TLA) in 265 sera and 270 cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) samples from infected patients with Toxoplasma gondii and or HIV and in sera of 50 healthy individuals. The samples of sera and CSF were organized in 8 groups. The sera sample groups were: Group I - Se/CT/AIDS (patients with cerebral toxoplasmosis/AIDS) with 58 samples; Group II - Se/ONinf/AIDS/PosT (patients with AIDS/other neuroinfections/positive toxoplasmosis) with 49 samples; Group III - Se/ONinf/AIDS/NegT (patients with AIDS/other neuroinfections/negative toxoplasmosis) with 58 samples; Group IV - Se/PosT/NegHIV (individuals with asymptomatic toxoplasmosis/negative HIV) with 50 samples and Group V - Se/NegT/NegHIV (healthy individuals/negative toxoplasmosis and HIV) with 50 samples. The CSF sample groups were: Group VI - CSF/CT/AIDS (patients with cerebral toxoplasmosis/AIDS) with 99 samples; Group VII - CSF/ONinf/AIDS/PosT (patients with AIDS/other neuroinfections/positive toxoplasmosis) with 112 samples, and Group VIII - CSF/ONinf/AIDS/NegT (patients with AIDS/other neuroinfections/negative toxoplasmosis) with 59 samples. Levels of IgM, IgA, IgE, IgG and subclasses were determined by ELISA against TLA and ESA antigens. IgM, IgA or IgE antibodies against ESA or TLA were not detected in sera from patients with toxoplasmosis suggesting that all patients were in chronic phase of the infection. High levels of IgG1 against TLA were found in sera samples from groups I, II and IV and in CSF samples from groups VI and VII; whereas IgG2, IgG3 and IgG4 levels were not detected in the same sera or CSF sample groups. However, patients from groups I and VI, that had tachyzoites circulating in blood and CSF respectively, produced a mix of IgG1 and IgG4 antibodies against ESA. IgG2 against ESA were predominant in serum from patients with the latent (non-active) T. gondii infection/HIV negative and in CSF samples from patients with other neuroinfections and positive toxoplasmosis (groups IV and VII, respectively). IgG4 levels against ESA were found to be significantly (P<0.05 and P<0.005) higher in patients with cerebral toxoplasmosis (groups I and VI, respectively) in comparison with groups II, IV and VII. This data suggest that IgG4 can be valuable for supporting the diagnosis of focal brain lesions, caused by T. gondii infection, in HIV-infected patients. This approach might be useful, mainly when molecular investigation to detect parasites is not available.

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Accession: 053680334

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PMID: 23811152

DOI: 10.1016/j.jim.2013.06.005

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