Volume 26, Issue 1
  • ISSN: 0002-9637
  • E-ISSN: 1476-1645



An enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) for the serodiagnosis of human African trypanosomiasis (sleeping sickness) is described. A crude extract of a suspension which was purified from all blood components was used as antigen. In rabbits experimentally infected with or both homologous (anti-) and heterologous (anti-) antibodies could be detected with ELISA using as antigen. The sensitivity of ELISA was comparable with that of the immunofluorescence (IF) technique. Sera of patients with sleeping sickness were examined with ELISA and IF. It proved possible to discriminate between groups of individuals with and without trypanosomiasis. Cross reactions were only observed with serum from a patient in which antibodies to were detected. No cross reactions were observed in sera from patients with malaria, toxoplasmosis, schistosomiasis, or echinococcosis. ELISA represents a good alternative to IF in the serology of African trypanosomiasis, and may be particularly suitable for mass screening purposes.


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