Delineation of Human Antibody Responses to Culture Filtrate Antigens ofMycobacterium tuberculosis

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This study was undertaken to define the antigens in culture filtrates of actively replicating Mycobacterium tuberculosis that are recognized by antibodies from tuberculosis (TB) patients. Two-dimensional Western blots were probed with sera from healthy controls and TB patients that were preabsorbed with Escherichia coli lysates to deplete cross-reactive antibodies. Antibodies from TB patients recognized 26 of the >100 culture filtrate proteins, and the repertoire changed with disease progression. Only 12 of 26 antigens, including 3 proteins implicated in colonization and invasion by mycobacteria (MPT51, MPT32, and 85C), and 9 (as yet undefined proteins) were reactive with sera from TB patients with early noncavitary or cavitary disease. Eight additional antigens, including 4 undefined proteins, were recognized only by sera from a subset of patients with advanced cavitary disease. Studies suggest that 3 of the antigens recognized by sera from patients with early TB (85C, MPT32, and a 88-kDa protein) have strong serodiagnostic potential.

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