oa Central African Journal of Medicine - Cross-reactivity in the use of immunofluorescence tests for the diagnosis of three species of intestinal helminths

Volume 28, Issue 3
  • ISSN : 0008-9176



The fluorescent antibody test was used to determine if cross-reactivity occurred between three common species of intestinal helminths, Necator Americanus, Ascaris lumbricoides and Trichuris trichuria, using serum and breast milk samples from maternity patients. All species showed cross reactivity using sections of adult worms as antigen, and the large proportion of false negatives among Necator infected samples, and the high number of false positives in all three species using sera and milk from uninfected patients suggest that this technique has severe limitations as a diagnostic tool until greater sensitivity and specificity is attained.

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