Anti-Onchocerca volvulus immunoglobulin subclass response in children from Sierra Leone

A. A. Gbakima, M. S. Ibrahim, Alan Leroy Scott

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


The humoral immune responses of a paediatric population of 224 children, 2-15 years of age, residing in an onchocerciasis endemic area of Sierra Leone, were studied to gain information that may be useful in the serodiagnosis of prepatent and low-level infections with Onchocerca volvulus. The antigen-specific levels of IgG and IgG4 were determined and evaluated in the context of the parasitological status of the child. Over 87% of the microfilaria-negative children had significant levels of antigen-specific antibodies against O. volvulus, suggesting that a large percentage of this paediatric population were harbouring prepatent or low-level infections. Over 60% of the children in the group that had detectable numbers of microfilariae in skin snips had elevated levels of O. volvulus-specific IgG4. In contrast, only 23% of the microfilaria-negative children had detectable IgG4 responses. The results presented here indicate that measures of O. volvulus-specific IgG4 may be a useful indicator of the parasitological status of children during the very early stages of onchocerciasis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)53-56
Number of pages4
JournalScandinavian Journal of Immunology, Supplement
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - 1992


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology

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