Intrathecal synthesis of human T-lymphotropic virus type 1 (HTLV-1) antibodies (Abs) represents conclusive evidence of a specific immune response in the central nervous system of HTLV-1 associated myelopathy/tropical spastic paraparesis (HAM/TSP) patients. Western blotting (WB) for HTLV Abs in serum is a confirmatory test for HTLV-1 infection. The aim of this study was to standardise the Western blot to demonstrate the intrathecal pattern of Abs against HTLV-1 proteins in HAM/TSP patients. Paired cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) and serum samples were selected from 20 patients with definite HAM/TSP, 19 HTLV-1 seronegative patients and two HTLV-1 patients without definite HAM/TSP. The presence of reactive bands of greater intensity in the CSF compared to serum (or bands in only the CSF) indicated the intrathecal synthesis of anti-HTLV-1 Abs. All definite HAM/TSP patients presented with an intrathecal synthesis of anti-HTLV-1 Abs; these Abs were not detected in the control patients. The most frequent intrathecal targets of anti-HTLV-1 Abs were GD21, rgp46-I and p24 and, to a lesser extent, p19, p26, p28, p32, p36, p53 gp21 and gp46. The intrathecal immune response against env (GD21 and rgp46-I) and gag (p24) proteins represents the most important humoral pattern in HAM/TSP. This response may be used as a diagnostic marker, considering the frequent association of intrathecal anti-HTLV-1 Ab synthesis with HAM/TSP and the pathogenesis of this neurological disease.
The identification of recent HIV infection is important for epidemiological studies and to monitor the epidemic. The objective of this study was to evaluate two rapid tests that are easily available to the Brazilian scientific community for using as markers of recent HIV infection. The Rapid Test - HIV-1/2 Bio-Manguinhos (Bio-Manguinhos/Fiocruz, Brazil) and the Rapid Check HIV 1&2 (NDI-UFES, Center for Infectious Diseases, Universidade Federal do Espírito Santo) were tested, using 489 samples with HIV positive serology, from blood donors, previously classified as recent or long-term infection by serological testing algorithm for recent HIV seroconversion (STARHS) or LS-HIV Vitros assay methods. The samples were diluted prior to testing (1:50 and 1:100 for the Rapid Test - HIV-1/2 Bio-Manguinhos, and 1:500 and 1:600 for the Rapid Check HIV 1&2). Negative samples were considered recent infection, whereas those showing any color intensity were associated with long-term infection. The best dilutions were 1:100 for HIV-1/2 Bio-Manguinhos test (Kappa = 0.840; overall agreement = 0.93), and 1:500 for the Rapid Check HIV 1&2 (Kappa = 0.867; overall agreement = 0.94). The results suggest that both rapid tests can be used to detect recent seroconversion.
OBJETIVO: Descrever os principais resultados do programa de triagem neonatal para a doença falciforme do Estado do Rio de Janeiro em 15 meses de funcionamento (agosto de 2000 a novembro de 2001). MÉTODOS: A partir de agosto de 2000, amostras de sangue passaram a ser coletadas de todos os recém-nascidos atendidos em postos de atenção básica à saúde no Estado para triagem neonatal da doença falciforme. Essas amostras são submetidas a cromatografia líquida de alta resolução. Se o cromatograma resultante for compatível com a doença falciforme, a criança e seus pais são encaminhados para confirmação diagnóstica e tratamento. RESULTADOS: De agosto de 2000 a novembro de 2001, 99 260 recém nascidos participaram da triagem. Houve um caso de homozigose para Hb C. Um em cada 27 recém-nascidos triados pelo programa apresentou o traço falciforme (Hb AS). A doença falciforme foi constatada em 83 casos (um caso novo para cada 1 196 nascimentos): 62 Hb S, 18 Hb SC, 3 Hb SD. Uma criança não compareceu para confirmação diagnóstica. As 82 crianças acompanhadas apresentaram 15 intercorrências (infecções de vias aéreas superiores, febre, seqüestro esplênico, síndrome mão-pé e crises de vaso-oclusão), motivando sete internações. Houve necessidade de transfusão sangüínea em 15 crianças, mas nenhuma tornou-se alo-imunizada. Os demais bebês estão evoluindo satisfatoriamente com o uso de penicilina profilática. CONCLUSÕES: Nossos dados evidenciam a importância do diagnóstico precoce da doença falciforme, de forma a prevenir e evitar as freqüentes complicações infecciosas enfrentadas por esses pacientes.
OBJECTIVE: To describe the main results obtained in the first 15 months of neonatal screening for sickle cell disease in the state of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, from August 2000 to November 2001. METHODS: Starting in August 2000, blood samples began to be collected for sickle cell disease screening from all newborns receiving care in primary health care clinics in the state of Rio de Janeiro. The samples were submitted to high-resolution liquid chromatography. If the resulting chromatogram was compatible with sickle cell disease, the child and the parents were referred for diagnostic confirmation and treatment. RESULTS: Between August 2000 and November 2001, 99 260 newborns were screened. There was one case of homozygous Hb C. On average, one of every 27 newborns who were screened presented sickle cell trait (Hb AS). Sickle cell disease was observed in 83 cases, or one new case in each 1 196 births. The 83 consisted of: 62 Hb S, 18 Hb SC, and 3 Hb SD. One child did not appear for diagnostic confirmation. The 82 children who were followed up by the program presented 15 intercurrent illnesses (upper respiratory infections, fever, splenic sequestration crises, hand-foot syndrome, and vascular occlusion), resulting in seven hospital admissions. Blood transfusions were necessary with 15 children, but none developed alloimmunization. All the other babies were doing well with the use of prophylactic penicillin. CONCLUSIONS: Our data show the importance of early diagnosis for sickle cell disease, so as to prevent the frequent infectious complications faced by these patients.