Detalle Publicación

A review of the basis of the immunological diagnosis of ruminant brucellosis
Autores: Ducrotoy, M. J.; Conde Álvarez, Raquel; Blasco, J. M.; Moriyón Uría, Ignacio
ISSN: 0165-2427
Volumen: 171
Páginas: 81 - 102
Fecha de publicación: 2016
Bacteria of the genus Brucella cause brucellosis, the most common bacterial zoonosis worldwide. The diagnosis of Brucella abortus and Brucella melitensis ruminant brucellosis is based on bacteriological and immunological tests, the latter being routinely used in control and eradication and surveillance programs. Infections by smooth and rough Brucella spp., the use of smooth and rough vaccines, and the false-positive serological reactions caused by Yersinia enterocolitica O:9 and other cross-reacting bacteria represent the immunological contexts in which those tests are used. This complex context explains the large number of brucellosis tests that have been developed, and that vary in antigen type, antigen presentation, antibody and conditions for the reaction, the response detected and the sample required. This wealth of information and an imperfect understanding of Brucella antigens and of the peculiarities of the immunoresponse to Brucella has created confusion and led to several misconceptions on the usefulness and limitations of the brucellosis diagnostic tests. In this review, Brucella antigens are examined focusing on cellular topology, supramolecular properties, epitopic structure and lipopolysaccharide and protein cross-reactivity in the various contexts of the immune response in ruminants. Then, the significance of these features in diagnostic tests that use whole bacteria is discussed with respect to the activities of ruminant immunoglobulins, and the effect of pH on unspecific agglutinations, non-agglutinating and blocking antibodies, pseudo-prozones and complement activation. Similarly, the bacterial surface lipopolysaccharides and cognate polysaccharides are discussed with regards to topological effects, epitope exposure, ionic strength and antibody avidity in immunoprecipitation, immunosorbent and fluorescence polarization assays. Finally, the search for immunodominant protein antigens and their use in immunological tests is reviewed. Critical review of the existing information is necessary both to select optimal tests according to the logistical means available and the epidemiological context, and to focus the development of new tests.