[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: OBJETIVO: Evaluar la aglutinación macroscópica con antígeno termorresistente (TR) como tamiz diagnóstico de leptospirosis humana en diferentes etapas de la enfermedad. MATERIAL Y MÉTODOS:La definición de casos se basó en la microaglutinación (MAT), recuento de leucocitos y neutrofilia. Se incluyeron 218 casos confirmados y 242 no casos. Cada muestra del banco de sueros del laboratorio del Instituto Nacional de Enfermedades Respiratorias de Santa Fe, Argentina, de 2008 a 2010, se clasificó según días de evolución en tres etapas: primera (<10 días), segunda (10- 25 días) y tercera (>25 días). RESULTADOS: La sensibilidad hallada fue: 71.1, 93.4 y 95.6% para etapas 1, 2 y 3 respectivamente. La especificidad varió de 79.0 a 69.2%. La variabilidad intra e interoperador fue moderada. CONCLUSIÓN: La variabilidad del TR, su baja sensibilidad en la primera etapa y baja especificidad en todas las etapas de la enfermedad sugieren que sería indispensable la incorporación de nuevos métodos diagnósticos de tamiz para la detección precoz de casos en nuestro país, y países donde aún se apliquen este tipo de métodos.
Salud publica de Mexico 10/2012; 54(5):530-536. · 0.94 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: To evaluate the macroscopic agglutination test using Temperature Resistant (TR) antigen as a screening test for the diagnosis of human leptospirosis in different stages of the disease.
The criteria for case definition were based on the results of the microscopic agglutination test (MAT), leukocyte counts and neutrophilia, resulting 218 confirmed cases and 242 non- cases. Each sample was classified according to the days of the disease progression in three stages: first (<10 days), second (10 - 25 days) and third (> 25 days). The design was cross-sectional observational.
TR sensitivity was 71,1% on stage 1. 93.4% on stage 2 and 95.6% on stage 3. The specificity at different stages ranged from 79.0 to 69.2%. Intra and inter-operator variability was moderate.
TR variability, low sensitivity in the first stage and low specificity found in all stages of the disease, suggest that it is essential to incorporate new diagnostic methods to screen for early detection of cases in our country and in countries that still apply such methods.
Salud publica de Mexico 10/2012; 54(5):530-6. · 0.94 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: SUMMARY We report an evaluation of the accuracy of ELISA for the detection of Leptospira-specific antibodies in humans. Eighty-eight studies published in 35 articles met all inclusion criteria and were submitted to meta-analysis. Pooled sensitivity and specificity were 0·779 (95% CI 0·770-0·789) and 0·913 (95% CI 0·908-0·917), respectively, and the area under the curve was 0·964. Heterogeneity across studies was statistically significant, but none of the sources of heterogeneity (disease stage, antigen used, antibody detected) could fully explain this finding. Although the convalescent stage of disease was significantly associated with higher diagnostic accuracy, IgM ELISA was the best choice, regardless of the stage of disease. Negative ELISAs (IgG or IgM) applied in the acute phase do not rule out leptospirosis due to the possibility of false-negative results. In this case it is advisable to request a second blood sample or to apply a direct method for leptospiral DNA.
Epidemiology and Infection 09/2012; · 2.49 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: To identify LipL32 epitopes and to evaluate their capability to recognize specific antibodies using ELISA.
Epitope mapping by means of a library of overlapping peptide fragments prepared by simultaneous and parallel solid phase peptide synthesis on derivatized cellulose membranes (SPOT synthesis) was carried out. Eighty-seven overlapping decapentapeptides corresponding to the complete sequence of LipL32 were synthesized. According to spot-image intensities, the most reactive sequences were localized in regions 151-177 (sequence AAKAKPVQKLDDDDDGDDTYKEERHNK) and 181-204 (sequence LTRIKIPNPPKSFDDLKNIDTKKL). Two peptides (P1 and P2) corresponding to these sequences were synthesized, and their reactivity evaluated using ELISA test.
Epitope identification and analysis suggested the existence of two antigenic regions within LipL32. These LipL32 reactive regions were highly conserved among antigenically variants of Leptospira spp. isolates. Peptides containing these regions (P1 and P2) showed a good capability for anti-leptospiral antibody recognition.
This finding could have potential relevance not only for serodiagnosis but also as a starting point for the characterization of targets for vaccine design.
Letters in Applied Microbiology 08/2009; 49(5):641-5. · 1.63 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: There is scarce data on the burden of leptospirosis and its epidemiological characteristics in Argentina. This study aimed to evaluate distribution of leptospirosis cases and identify risk factors for the disease during national laboratory-based surveillance. From January 1999 to December 2005, 812 suspected cases were referred to the national reference laboratory, of which 182 and 463 had respectively, laboratory confirmed and unconfirmed diagnosis of leptospirosis. The diagnosis of leptospirosis was discarded in 167 cases. The most prevalent presumptive infecting serogroup was Icterohaemorrhagie followed by Pomona, Ballum and Canicola. The majority of cases occurred during the worm and rainy months. Confirmed cases were predominantly adults and males, who presented with fever, headache and myalgias. Severe clinical manifestations included jaundice and acute renal insufficiency. Conjunctival suffusion, a hallmark clinical sign of leptospirosis, was found in 55% of confirmed cases, and 43% of the cases with discarded diagnosis (p=0.036). After multivariate analyses, age >30 years (OR=2.16; 1.05-4.41), occupation in a rural setting (OR=3.41; 1.45-8.06), contact with contaminated surface water (OR=2.17; 1.01-4.68), and contact with floods (OR=4.49; 1.17-17.25) were significantly associated with leptospirosis. In conclusion, although activities associated with rural occupations remain important risk factors in Argentina, exposures occurring during flooding events have emerged to be the major risk factor for leptospirosis.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Norway rats (Rattus norvegicus) carry several zoonotic pathogens and because rats and humans live in close proximity in urban environments, there exists potential for transmission. To identify zoonotic agents carried by rats in Baltimore, Maryland, USA, we live-trapped 201 rats during 2005-2006 and screened them for a panel of viruses, bacteria, and parasites. Antibodies against Seoul virus (57.7%), hepatitis E virus (HEV, 73.5%), Leptospira interrogans (65.3%), Bartonella elizabethae (34.1%), and Rickettsia typhi (7.0%) were detected in Norway rats. Endoparasites, including Calodium hepatica (87.9%) and Hymenolepis sp. (34.4%), and ectoparasites (13.9%, primarily Laelaps echidninus) also were present. The risk of human exposure to these pathogens is a significant public health concern. Because these pathogens cause non-specific and often self-limiting symptoms in humans, infection in human populations is probably underdiagnosed.
Epidemiology and Infection 11/2007; 135(7):1192-9. · 2.49 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: To develop a solid-phase enzyme immunoassay (ELISA) for genus-specific immunoglobulin G (IgG) determination with leptospirosis and to evaluate the ELISA in different stages of the disease.
A total of 1,077 serum samples from 812 patients with suspected leptospirosis were analyzed. The samples had come from diagnoses done in the laboratory of the National Institute of Respiratory Diseases (Instituto Nacional de Enfermedades Respiratorias), in the city of Santa Fe, Argentina, between 1999 and 2005. Included in the study were 182 confirmed cases (267 samples), 167 negative cases (293 samples), and 40 probable cases (60 samples) (based on case definitions based on the results from the microscopic agglutination test (MAT), leukocyte counts, and neutrophilia values). Each sample was classified, according to the days of the natural history of disease, into one of three stages: first (< 10 days), second (10-25 days), or third (> 25 days). The antigen used in the ELISA was an extract of a mixture of pyrogenes and tarassovi serovars cultivated in a liquid medium, treated with ultrasound, and immobilized by adsorption on polystyrene plates. As a secondary antibody, a peroxidase-conjugated goat anti-human IgG monoclonal antibody was used. The cutoff value, sensitivity, and specificity of the ELISA were determined using the definitions of confirmed cases and of negatives cases as the standard. In order to determine the optimal cutoff value, the area under the receiver operating characteristic curve was calculated.
The sensitivity of the evaluated test was much higher in the second stage (93.2%) than in either the first stage (68.1%) or the third stage (78.8%). The specificity increased gradually from 96.3% in the first stage to 100% in the third stage.
Our results indicate that this ELISA test can be a very useful complement to the MAT for the diagnosis of leptospirosis in all the stages and, in particular, in order to diagnose acute disease sooner.
Revista Panamericana de Salud Pública 07/2007; 21(6):388-95. · 0.85 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Our objective was to look for associations between leptospiral infection in rodents and selected environmental and rodent characteristics in Santa Fe, Argentina. Rodents (n = 214) were trapped alive from January 1998 to December 1999 in three environmental settings. Kidneys from 118 rodents were cultured and serum samples from 201 were processed by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). Logistic regression was performed with ELISA seropositivity as the dependent variable and rodent characteristics were offered as independent variables. Overall prevalence of positive ELISA reactions was 42% (84/201). In urban areas, leptospiral isolations belonged to the Ballum serogroup; in natural corridors, they belonged to the Icterohaemorragiae serogroup. M. musculus (house mouse) was the most-frequently captured species and the predominant one in urban areas. Most isolates and seropositivity results were obtained on this species. Adults and subadults had higher seroprevalences than juvenile rodents. Oligoryzomys flavescens had higher seroprevalence than Akodon azarae, Mus musculus, Rattus rattus and Rattus norvegicus.
Preventive Veterinary Medicine 09/2003; 60(3):227-35. · 2.51 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: An enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) for the detection of IgG antibodies in rodents was developed and validated with the microscopic agglutination test (MAT) and leptospiral cultures. Sonicated antigen from cultures of serovars tarassovi and pyrogenes was used. As conjugate, a combination of anti-rat and anti-hamster IgG labeled with peroxidase was used. The optimal cut-off point was determined by plotting the sensitivity and specificity for various cut-off point values by means of receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curve. Concordance between ELISA and each of the MAT titers was measured by kappa (kappa). Proportions of positive results were compared by means of McNemar's test. Total 214 rodents were trapped, but only 117 could be processed by the three techniques (culture, ELISA, MAT; 1:20, 1:40, 1:50) and used for statistical analysis. Although, MAT titers in rodents infected with the serogroup Ballum tended to be lower than those infected with the serogroup Icterohaemorrhagiae, all (20/20) were ELISA-positive and almost all (19/20) were MAT-positive.The percentage of positive results obtained by ELISA, 47.0% exceeded significantly the 40.2% obtained by MAT (1:50). Difference between ELISA and MAT (1:40) was not significant and no differences were observed between ELISA and MAT (1:20). Agreement, specificity, sensitivity and the consequent area under the ROC curve between ELISA and MAT were higher as MAT cut-off points were lowered, being optimal at 1:20. The fact that differences between ELISA and MAT were significant at 1:50, but not at 1:40 or 1:20, supports the suggestion that lower MAT titers should be considered positive in rodents. The ELISA developed to detect leptospire-specific antibodies had optimal sensitivity and specificity in relation to MAT and it is concluded that it may constitute a very useful indicator for epidemiological purposes of past or present leptospiral infection in rodents.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: In March-April 1998 in a neighborhood in the city of Santa Fe, Argentina, there was an outbreak of an acute disease characterized by fever, headaches, and intense myalgias. This article presents the studies surrounding this outbreak and the attempts to identify the source and the mode of transmission. The epidemiological, serological, and clinical findings indicated that the causative agent was Leptospira interrogans. As a screening test, macroscopic agglutination with heat-resistant antigen was applied, followed by the ELISA test, and, as a confirmatory test, microscopic agglutination for 10 serotypes of L. interrogans. The study covered 32 persons, 8 dogs, and 8 water samples. Among the 32 persons, 12 cases were confirmed, 2 were suspicious, and 18 were negative. Six dogs were found to be infected, and motile spirochetes were found in the water samples. The human sera reacted with the ballum, canicola, icterohaemorrhagiae, and pyrogenes serotypes; the canine sera reacted with the ballum, canicola, and pomona serotypes. The coagglutination found in all the confirmed cases indicates that they were acute cases of leptospirosis, but it was impossible to identify the causal serotype. Except for the index case, the disease was not recognized clinically. Several facts suggest that the outbreak was caused by rain that had flooded the study area. The results of this study emphasize the need for active surveillance of leptospirosis when there are floods and other natural disasters.
Revista Panamericana de Salud Pública 02/2000; 7(1):35-40. · 0.85 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Since April of 1998 a high number of leptospirosis cases were detected, coming from the area of Reconquista Central Hospital in Santa Fe province. Since January of that year a notable increase in rainfall and river levels was observed causing inundation. As screening test, macroscopic agglutination (MAT) using 10 serotypes of L. interrogans. Among the 122 patients studied 71 were TR positive and 52 were also ELISA positive, leptospirosis diagnosis being confirmed in 40 of them. Five infecting serogroups were identified: Icterohaemorrhagiae (7/40), Ballum (5/40), Sejroe (3/40), Pomona (3/40) and Canicola (2/40). In the remaining cases (20/40), co-agglutinins were found at the same titer against two or more serotypes of leptospires. Infection prevalence was higher in men and productive age (21 to 40 years). The clinical symptoms more frequently observed were headache, fever and myalgias. All cases occurred after the rains and in the period when the area was flooded. Their clinical presentation, time distribution, geographical localization and high frequency of contact with the risk factor inundation could indicate that, independently of search activities, there was an outbreak.
Revista Argentina de microbiología 34(3):124-31. · 0.66 Impact Factor