Antibodies Against Malaria Sporozoites in Patients with Acute Uncomplicated Malaria and Patients with Cerebral Malaria

View More View Less
  • * Departments of Microbiology and Immunology
  • ** Departments of Medical Entomology
  • Departments of Clinical Tropical Medicine, and Hospital for Tropical Diseases, Faculty of Tropical Medicine, Mahidol University, 420/6 Rajvithi Road, Bangkok 10400, Thailand

Serum samples from 95 patients with acute uncomplicated falciparum malaria (AM) and 95 patients with cerebral malaria (CM) were tested by the indirect immunofluorescent assay (IFA) for IgG and IgM antibodies against Plasmodium falciparum and P. vivax sporozoites. Forty-six (48%) CM patients were positive for antibodies against P. falciparum sporozoites whereas only 23 (24%) were positive for antibodies against P. vivax sporozoites (P < 0.002). A similar result was obtained in AM patients. However, CM patients had significantly lower mean IgG anti-sporozoite titer for P. falciparum than did AM patients (P < 0.05), especially when only anti-sporozoite antibody-positive CM and AM patients were compared (P < 0.0005), suggesting that CM patients had relatively less exposure and were probably less immune to malaria than were AM patients

The persistence of anti-sporozoite antibodies also was investigated in paired sera taken 63 days apart from 108 patients with acute falciparum malaria. There were significant decreases in the mean antibody titers in the follow-up sera during the period of stay in the malaria-free area. It was proposed that determination of anti-sporozoite antibody be made as a substitute for, or in addition to, anti-blood stage antibody for seroepidemiological study of malaria, especially in the monitoring of the success of the malaria control program.