Serodiagnostic potential of culture filtrate antigens of Mycobacterium tuberculosis

Clin Diagn Lab Immunol. 2000 Jul;7(4):662-8. doi: 10.1128/cdli.7.4.662-668.2000.


Our studies of the humoral responses of tuberculosis (TB) patients have defined the repertoire of culture filtrate antigens of Mycobacterium tuberculosis that are recognized by antibodies from cavitary and noncavitary TB patients and demonstrated that the profile of antigens recognized changes with disease progression (K. Samanich et al., J. Infect. Dis. 178:1534-1538, 1998). We have identified several antigens with strong serodiagnostic potential. In the present study we have evaluated the reactivity of cohorts of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)-negative, smear-positive; HIV-negative, smear-negative; and HIV-infected TB patients, with three of the candidate antigens, an 88-kDa protein, antigen (Ag) 85C, and MPT32, and compared the reactivity of the same patient cohort with the 38-kDa antigen and Ag 85A. We have also compared the reactivity of native Ag 85C and MPT32 with their recombinant counterparts. The evaluation of the reactivity was done by a modified enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay described earlier (S. Laal et al., Clin. Diag. Lab. Immunol. 4:49-56, 1997), in which all sera are preadsorbed against Escherichia coli lysates to reduce the levels of cross-reactive antibodies. Our results demonstrate that (i) antigens identified on the basis of their reactivity with TB patients' sera provide high sensitivities for serodiagnosis, (ii) recombinant Ag 85C and MPT32, expressed in E. coli, show reduced reactivity with human TB sera, and (iii) of the panel of antigens tested, the 88-kDa protein is the most promising candidate for serodiagnosis of TB in HIV-infected individuals. Moreover, these results reaffirm that both the extent of the disease and the bacterial load may play a role in determining the antigen profile recognized by antibodies.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Antigens, Bacterial / genetics
  • Antigens, Bacterial / immunology*
  • Humans
  • Mycobacterium tuberculosis / immunology*
  • Recombinant Proteins / genetics
  • Recombinant Proteins / immunology
  • Serologic Tests
  • Tuberculosis / diagnosis*
  • Tuberculosis / immunology*
  • Tuberculosis / microbiology


  • Antigens, Bacterial
  • Recombinant Proteins