Sera from 71 patients with surgically confirmed hydatid disease (which is caused by Echinococcus granulosus) were studied by an enzyme-linked immunoelectrotransfer blot (EITB) assay. Sera from patients either with other cestode infections or with another illness were used as controls. Results of the EITB test for hydatidosis were compared with those of the double- diffusion (DD5) test and an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). In the EITB assay with bovine lyophilized hydatid fluid, three antigen bands of 8, 16, and 21 kDa were diagnostically important. The sensitivity of the assay by using these antigen bands was 80% for hepatic cysts, 56% for pulmonary cysts, and 56% for cysts located in multiple organs. In sera from controls, the specificity of the EITB assay was 100%. Cross-reactions to the 8-, 16-, and 21-kDa bands occurred, respectively, in 12, 4, and 4% of sera from patients with cysticercosis. No cross-reactions were noted in patients infected with Hymenolepis nana. The ELISA in which swine hydatid fluid was used as the antigen was as sensitive as the EITB test but was less specific (80%) and frequently cross-reacted with sera from patients with other cestode infections. The sensitivity of the DD5 test, which uses sheep hydatid fluid, was low (47%), but its specificity was as high as that of the EITB assay. However, in patients with cysticercosis, cross-reactions were observed in 23% of sera tested. Despite the higher sensitivity found with the EITB assay, 23% (n = 5) of the serum samples that were positive by the DD5 test were not detected by the EITB assay. The EITB assay offers greater sensitivity and specificity than do the ELISA and the DD5 test. The highest proportion of hydatid cases is detected when the EITB and DD5 tests are run simultaneously.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Microbiology (medical)