Recombinant Factor C Assay for Measuring Endotoxin in House Dust: Comparison With LAL, and (1→3)-β-D-Glucans

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BackgroundMeasurement of exposure to environmental endotoxin is frequently performed using a Limulus amebocyte lysate (LAL) based assay. Recently, a new method has become available with similar sensitivity and potentially greater specificity using recombinant Factor C (rFC) from the horseshoe crab Carcinoscorpius rotundicauda. A preliminary study was carried out to determine the comparability of LAL and rFC in measuring endotoxins in house dust for large scale epidemiologic studies.MethodsHouse dust samples were collected from family rooms by vacuuming 1 m2 of the center of the room. Sixty sieved house dust samples were assayed for endotoxin by LAL (Cambrex, KQCL lysate) and rFC (Pyrogene, Cambrex) and for (1→ 3)-β-D-glucans by ELISA. The resistant parallel line estimation was used for data analysis of LAL and rFC. A four-parameter logistic fit with inverse prediction was used to calculate (13)-β-Dglucan levels of the samples.ResultsThe spike recovery was 113.63% (95% CI =101.69, 125.57%) for LAL and 99.69% (95% CI = 90.14, 109.24%) for rFC assays. The LAL assay gave higher endotoxin estimates compared with rFC. The LAL and rFC estimates were highly correlated (r=0.86, P < 0.0001). The difference between LAL and rFC endotoxin estimates correlated with the LAL estimates (r = 0.51, P < 0.0001). However, the difference was not correlated with (13)-β-D-glucans.ConclusionLAL and rFC gave comparable results, hence either assay can be used for studies of endotoxin exposure. The current study shows that (13)-β-D-glucan is not a major factor interfering with endotoxin measurements in house dust using a Cambrex KQCL LAL preparation.

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