A study of antibody and T cell recognition of rhoptry-associated protein-1 (RAP-1) and RAP-2 recombinant proteins and peptides of Plasmodium falciparum in migrants and residents of the state of Rondonia, Brazil.
Humoral and cellular responses were examined among natives and migrants in an area of the Amazon region of Brazil. Rhoptry-associated protein-1 (RAP-1) and RAP-2 expressed in Escherichia coli expression systems, a peptide corresponding to the epitope bound by inhibitory anti-RAP-1 antibodies, and four other RAP-1 and RAP-2 synthetic peptides were used in these studies. Plasma from the native population had greater IgG reactivity to the N-terminal third of RAP-1 than the migrant population; both populations had low levels of IgM to this region of RAP-1. The IgG reactivity to RAP-2 and to the C-terminal third of RAP-1, as well as for all the peptides, including the peptide from the inhibitory domain, were low or absent in both populations. In contrast, there were a high number of subjects with an IgM response to the peptides. Cellular responses were measured by proliferation of peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC) and, in some subjects, by reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction for interleukin-2 (IL-2), interferon-gamma (IFN-gamma), IL-4, and IL-10. Proliferation of PBMC was low when stimulated by recombinant proteins, peptides, or parasite lysate. Both RAP-1 and RAP-2 stimulated cytokine production by donor T cells; IL-2, IL-4, and IFN-gamma RNA transcripts were observed in response to recombinant proteins and parasite lysate, but with no uniform trends. From the observed antibody responses, RAP-1 appears to be more immunogenic than RAP-2.