Characterization of Humoral Immune Response in the Serum and Bile of Patients with Opisthorchiasis and Its Application in Immunodiagnosis

Surasakdi Wongratanacheewin
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Danai Bunnag Department of Microbiology, Faculty of Science, Hospital for Tropical Diseases

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Nara Vaeusorn Faculty of Tropical Medicine and Department of Radiology, Faculty of Medicine, Siriraj Hospital, Mahidol University, Bangkok, Thailand

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Stitaya Sirisinha
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The humoral immune response in patients with opisthorchiasis was investigated using an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. IgG antibody reactive with Opisthorchis viverrini antigens was present in the serum of all patients. The infection also stimulated specific IgA and IgE antibody responses in most patients and, in practically all patients, there was a marked increase of total IgE. There was a moderate but significant correlation between serum IgG antibody level and severity of infection as judged from the quantity of eggs in the stool of the patients. There was also a significant elevation of antibody in the bile and serum of O. viverrini-infected patients who also had biliary obstruction. Analysis of paired samples from individual patients showed that while IgG was the predominant class of antibody in the serum of all patients, IgA was present at approximately the same level as IgG or higher in the bile of many patients. In addition to IgA and IgG antibodies, IgE antibody was also detectable in 50% of the bile samples. The high level of IgA antibody in the bile together with its presence in association with the secretory component suggested a selective transport and/or local production of IgA antibody by the hepatobiliary system of these patients.

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