1887

Abstract

Disease due to the complex (MAC) is one of the most important opportunistic pulmonary infections. Since the clinical features of MAC pulmonary disease and tuberculosis (TB) resemble each other, and the former is often difficult to treat with chemotherapy, early differential diagnosis is desirable. The humoral immune responses to both diseases were compared by a unique multiple-antigen ELISA using mycobacterial species-common and species-specific lipid antigens, including glycopeptidolipid (GPL)-core. The results were assessed for two patient groups hospitalized and diagnosed clinically as having TB or MAC pulmonary disease. Diverse IgG antibody responsiveness was demonstrated against five lipid antigens: (1) monoacyl phosphatidylinositol dimannoside (Ac-PIM), (2) cord factor (trehalose 6,6′-dimycolate) (TDM-T) and (3) trehalose monomycolate from Bacillus Calmette-Guérin (BCG) (TMM-T), and (4) trehalose monomycolate (TMM-M) and (5) GPL-core from MAC. Anti-GPL-core IgG antibody was critical, and detected only in the primary and the secondary MAC diseases with high positivity, up to 88·4 %. However, IgG antibodies against Ac-PIM, TDM-T and TMM-T were elevated in both TB and MAC patients. Anti-TMM-M IgG antibody was also elevated in MAC disease preferentially, with a positive rate of 89·9 %, and therefore, it was also useful for the diagnosis of the disease. IgG antibody levels were increased at the early stages of the disease and declined in parallel to the decrease of bacterial burden to near the normal healthy control level, when the anti-mycobacterial chemotherapy was completed successfully. Unexpectedly, about 25 % of hospitalized TB patient sera were anti-GPL-core IgG antibody positive, although the specificity of GPL-core was sufficiently high (95·8 % negative in healthy controls), suggesting that a considerable number of cases of latent co-infection with MAC may exist in TB patients. Taken together, the combination of multiple-antigen ELISA using mycobacterial lipids, including GPL-core and TMM-M, gives good discrimination between healthy controls and sera from patients with TB or MAC disease, although for accurate diagnosis of TB more specific antigen(s) are needed.

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2006-02-01
2019-10-17
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