Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay (Elisa) in the Serodiagnosis of Hydatid Disease

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  • Laboratorio di Biologia Cellulare e Immunologia, Istituto Superiore di Sanitá, Roma, Italy

An enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) was adapted for the indirect serological measurement of anti-Echinococcus antibodies in human hydatid disease. Both the tube method and the microtitration procedure were used successfully. However, the tube test with a purified hydatid fluid fraction appears to be the method of choice. ELISA results are comparable to those found in the indirect hemagglutination test and with the agar gel methods (double diffusion and immunoelectrophoresis), but false positive results were observed with the sera of patients with schistosomiasis or liver cirrhosis. ELISA has proved to be a sensitive quantitative procedure for the serodiagnosis of human echinococcosis, even though it has not been shown in our study to be more sensitive than the classical serological procedures such as indirect hemagglutination. It can be concluded that ELISA should be considered not as an alternative but as a useful addition to the range of immunodiagnostic tests available for serodiagnosis of hydatid disease.

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