Field studies have suggested an immune-mediated mechanism associated with resistance to Schistosoma mansoni infection. Overall, levels of specific IgE have been correlated with resistance to infection, whereas levels of IgG4 have been associated with susceptibility. This study aimed to evaluate serum levels of soluble adult worm antigen preparation (SWAP)-specific IgE and IgG4 in relation to current infection in a large casuistic of individuals living in an endemic area of schistosomiasis in Bahia, Brazil. The prevalence of S. mansoni infection was 37·7% and the mean parasite burden was 55·4 (0-2100) epg/faeces. There was no significant difference in the levels of SWAP-specific IgE in individuals with different parasite burden, whereas high producers of parasite-specific IgG4 presented higher parasite burden when compared to low IgG4 producers. Additionally, S. mansoni parasite load was positively correlated with the levels of specific IgG4 or total IgE. No significant correlation was observed between parasite burden and SWAP-specific IgE. Nevertheless, SWAP-specific IgE/IgG4 ratio was higher in uninfected or lightly infected individuals (1-99 epg/faeces) than in heavily infected ones (≥400 epg/feces). These findings highlight the important role of IgE/IgG4 ratio in the resistance to infection, which could be useful for further studies in schistosomiasis vaccine candidates.
- Schistosoma mansoni
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