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Prospection of immunological biomarkers for characterization and monitoring of asymptomatic Leishmania (Leishmania) infantum infection

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  28 May 2020

Gisele Macêdo Rodrigues da Cunha
Affiliation:
Laboratório de Epidemiologia de Doenças Infecciosas e Parasitárias, Departamento de Parasitologia, Instituto de Ciências Biológicas, Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais, 31270-901, Belo Horizonte, MG, Brazil
Mariângela Carneiro
Affiliation:
Laboratório de Epidemiologia de Doenças Infecciosas e Parasitárias, Departamento de Parasitologia, Instituto de Ciências Biológicas, Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais, 31270-901, Belo Horizonte, MG, Brazil Pós-graduação em Ciências da Saúde, Infectologia e Medicina Tropical, Faculdade de Medicina, Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais, Brazil
Marcelo Antônio Pascoal-Xavier
Affiliation:
Grupo Imunologia de Doenças Virais, Instituto René Rachou, Fundação Oswaldo Cruz (FIOCRUZ), 30190-002, Belo Horizonte, MG, Brazil Laboratório de Patologia Molecular, Departamento de Anatomia Patológica, Faculdade de Medicina, Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais, 30130-100, Belo Horizonte, MG, Brazil
Iara Caixeta Marques da Rocha
Affiliation:
Laboratório de Epidemiologia de Doenças Infecciosas e Parasitárias, Departamento de Parasitologia, Instituto de Ciências Biológicas, Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais, 31270-901, Belo Horizonte, MG, Brazil
Fernanda do Carmo Magalhães
Affiliation:
Laboratório de Epidemiologia de Doenças Infecciosas e Parasitárias, Departamento de Parasitologia, Instituto de Ciências Biológicas, Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais, 31270-901, Belo Horizonte, MG, Brazil
Olindo Assis Martins-Filho
Affiliation:
Grupo Integrado de Pesquisas em Biomarcadores, Instituto René Rachou, Fundação Oswaldo Cruz (FIOCRUZ), 30190-002, Belo Horizonte, MG, Brazil
Edward Oliveira
Affiliation:
Pesquisa Clínica e Políticas Públicas em Doenças Infecciosas e Parasitárias, Instituto René Rachou, Fundação Oswaldo Cruz (FIOCRUZ), 30190-002, Belo Horizonte, MG, Brazil
Vanessa Peruhype-Magalhães
Affiliation:
Grupo Integrado de Pesquisas em Biomarcadores, Instituto René Rachou, Fundação Oswaldo Cruz (FIOCRUZ), 30190-002, Belo Horizonte, MG, Brazil
Corresponding
E-mail address:

Abstract

In areas endemic for Leishmania infantum, an asymptomatic infection may be an indicator of the extent of transmission. The main goal of this study was to evaluate the applicability of measuring circulating immunological biomarkers as an alternative strategy to characterize and monitor L. infantum asymptomatic infections in combination with serological methods. To this end, 179 children from a region endemic for visceral leishmaniasis (VL), aged 1–10 years old, selected from a cross-sectional study, were identified as asymptomatic (n = 81) or uninfected (n = 98) by qPCR and/or serological tests (ELISA using L. infantum soluble antigen and rK39), and, together with serum samples of children diagnosed with VL (n = 43), were subjected to avidity tests and cytokine levels measurement. Avidity rates (AR) ranging from 41 to 70% were found in 29 children (66%) from the asymptomatic group. On the other hand, high AR (above 70%) were observed in 27 children (64%) from the VL group. Logistic Regression and Classification and Regression Tree (CART) analyses demonstrated that lower AR and IFN-γ production associated with higher IL-17A levels were hallmarks in asymptomatic L. infantum infections. Therefore, this study proposes an association of immunological biomarkers that can be used as a complementary strategy for the characterization and monitoring of asymptomatic VL infections in children living in endemic areas.

Type
Research Article
Copyright
Copyright © The Author(s), 2020. Published by Cambridge University Press

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Prospection of immunological biomarkers for characterization and monitoring of asymptomatic Leishmania (Leishmania) infantum infection
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