Volume 56, Issue 1
  • ISSN: 0002-9637
  • E-ISSN: 1476-1645



A polymerase chain reaction (PCR)-based method to detect DNA in the blood lysate of infected individuals is described. A set of primers was designed to amplify the repeat 3 sequence (15r3) of the gene encoding a putative allergen. The qualitative PCR was carried out using blood lysates from subjects from an -endemic area of Gabon where loiasis exists sympatrically with , and from individuals from a loiasis-free area in Togo infected concomitantly with . No specific amplification was observed after ethidium bromide staining of a gel containing and control samples. In contrast, a 396-basepair (bp) DNA was detected in all microfilaremic individuals and in seven of the 20 amicrofilaremic subjects diagnosed by leukoconcentration. Qualitative Southern blots carried out at high stringency (65°C) using 15r3 oligonucleotide probe revealed hybridization only with samples (5 of 5 microfilaremic individuals and 15 of 20 amicrofilaremic individuals), confirming the results obtained with ethidium bromide staining of PCR products. We conclude that this 396-bp sequence could be used as a species-specific diagnostic tool for occult loiasis in an endemic area with concurrent filarial infections.


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