Antibody responses in New World camelids with tuberculosis caused by Mycobacterium microti

Vet Microbiol. 2007 Dec 15;125(3-4):265-73. doi: 10.1016/j.vetmic.2007.05.026. Epub 2007 Jun 13.


Antibody responses in New World camelids (NWC) infected with Mycobacterium microti were studied by two serological methods, multiantigen print immunoassay (MAPIA) and lateral-flow-based rapid test (RT). Serum samples were collected during 2004-2006 from 87 animals including 1 alpaca and 7 llamas with confirmed or suspected M. microti infection, 33 potentially exposed but clinically healthy animals from known infected herds, and 46 control NWC from herds where infection had not been previously diagnosed. The serological assays correctly identified infection status in 97% (MAPIA) or 87% (RT) cases. In three llamas with confirmed M. microti infection and one llama with gross pathology suggestive of disease, for which multiple serum samples collected over time were available, the antibody-based tests showed positive results 1-2 years prior to the onset of clinical signs or being found dead. In MAPIA, MPB83 protein was identified to be an immunodominant serological target antigen recognized in NWC infected with M. microti. With the limited number of animals tested in this study, the serological assays demonstrated the potential for convenient, rapid, and accurate diagnosis of M. microti infection in live llamas and alpacas.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antibodies, Bacterial / biosynthesis*
  • Antibodies, Bacterial / blood
  • Antigens, Bacterial / immunology
  • Bacterial Proteins / immunology
  • Camelids, New World / immunology*
  • Camelids, New World / microbiology*
  • Female
  • Immunoassay / veterinary
  • Membrane Proteins / immunology
  • Mycobacterium / immunology*
  • Mycobacterium / isolation & purification
  • Prospective Studies
  • Skin Tests / veterinary
  • Tuberculosis / immunology
  • Tuberculosis / microbiology
  • Tuberculosis / veterinary*


  • Antibodies, Bacterial
  • Antigens, Bacterial
  • Bacterial Proteins
  • MPB83 protein, Mycobacterium
  • Membrane Proteins