Cultured Plasmodium Falciparum Used as Antigen in a Malaria Indirect Fluorescent Antibody Test

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  • Department of Immunology, Walter Reed Army Institute of Research, Washington, D.C. 20012

Human sera obtained from persons infected with Plasmodium falciparum were tested by a standard indirect fluorescent antibody (IFA) technique using antigen obtained from long term in vitro cultures of two strains of P. falciparum, and antibody in high titer was reproducibly detected. Sera from uninfected persons had undetectable or very low titers of antibody. The use of cultured parasites offers a convenient, stable source of antigens from different P. falciparum strains without requiring their adaptation to primates. Differences observed in IFA titers obtained by reacting immune serum with two different P. falciparum strains suggests the need for further evaluation of strain specificity.