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FRANCESCO VITALE

Screening sierologico per Leishmania infantum su donatori di sangue e HIV+ asintomatici residenti in area endemica [Serological screening for Leishmania infantum in asymptomatic blood donors and HIV+ patients living in an endemic area]

  • Autori: Scarlata, F.; LI VECCHI, V.; Abbadessa, V.; Giordano, S.; Infurnari, L.; Saporito, L.; Mancuso, S.; Occhipinti, F.; Vitale, F.; Reale, S.; Titone, L.
  • Anno di pubblicazione: 2008
  • Tipologia: Articolo in rivista (Articolo in rivista)

Abstract

Visceral leishmaniasis (VL) is endemic in Sicily (48 new cases in 2004, of which nine were in Agrigento). In southern Europe between 25-70 per cent of adult VL cases are related to HIV infection. The HIV cases have a high risk (1.5-9%) of developing VL either as a new infection or as the revival of a latent infection. We therefore carried out serologic screening to detect antibodies against L. infantum by IFAT in 1449 blood donors in Agrigento and the surrounding area (May-December 2005) and in 120 HIV+ in western Sicily, all of whom were asymptomatic and had no history of VL. L. DNA was assessed by nested PCR in blood samples of some seropositive donors. Of the 1449 blood donors, 11 (0.75%) were positive by IFAT and three of them were also positive in PCR. L. infantum seropositivity is most probably the expression of recent infection because the clearance of serum antibodies is rather fast (6-12 months) after VL. This is why blood donation by Leishmania seropositive donors, whether positive or negative by PCR, could constitute an infection risk especially for immunosuppressed recipients, who should receive deleukocyted blood. Moreover it could be useful to monitor HIV/Leishmania coinfection cases to avoid the risk of slatentization of L. infection when CD4+ levels are very low