Published online by Cambridge University Press: 22 February 2007
The excretory/secretory (ES) metabolic products released by Gastrothylax crumenifer (Trematoda: Digenea) during in vitro incubations and the somatic extract of the adult parasite were analysed using polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (PAGE). Immunogenicity of ES and somatic extracts were evaluated by immunoblotting and ELISA using sera raised against ES and somatic antigens in rabbits. The electropherograms of ES and somatic extracts have been resolved into 38 and 41 polypeptides, respectively. The apparent molecular weights of these polypeptides range from < 29 to > 205 kDa. A total of 14 polypeptides were found to be common to both of the samples. The analysis of immunoblot results revealed 22 and 27 antigenic polypeptides in ES and somatic extracts respectively. Only 11 and 13 antigenic polypeptides were found specific to ES and tissue extract respectively. The molecular weights of these specific polypeptides were calculated to be < 14.4, 16, 20, 25, 33, 42, 119, 125 and > 205 kDa for metabolic products and < 14.4, 25, 30, 35, 78, 84 and > 205 kDa for the tissue extracts, respectively. Analysis of ELISA results revealed that a dilution of up to 1:3200 of the test sera could react with the ES product. Further, when the ES antigens were allowed to react with antisomatic extracts in hyperimmune sera the titre of IgG increased up to a dilution of 1:12800. The potential importance of these antigens in the immunodiagnosis of amphistomiasis is discussed.
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