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Journal of Tropical Medicine
Volume 2012, Article ID 875909, 7 pages
Research Article

Development and Application of an ELISA Assay Using Excretion/Secretion Proteins from Epimastigote Forms of T. cruzi (ESEA Antigens) for the Diagnosis of Chagas Disease

1Laboratorio de Diagnóstico Serológico en Enfermedades Infecciosas, Postgrado en Biología Aplicada, Universidad de Oriente, Núcleo de Sucre, Cumana 6101, Venezuela
2Instituto de Biomedicina y Ciencias Aplicadas, Universidad de Oriente, Núcleo de Sucre, Cumana 6101, Venezuela
3National Reference Centre for Parasitology, Research Institute of the McGill University Health Centre, Montreal General Hospital, 1650 Cedar Avenue R3-137, Montreal, QC, Canada H3G 1A4
4Centro de Investigaciones en Ciencias de la Salud, de la Universidad de Oriente, Núcleo de Anzoátegui, Barcelona 6001, Venezuela
5Departamento de Bioanálsis, Universidad de Oriente, Núcleo de Sucre, Cumana 6101, Venezuela

Received 5 May 2012; Accepted 14 August 2012

Academic Editor: Edecio Cunha-Neto

Copyright © 2012 Mariolga Berrizbeitia et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


An indirect enzyme-linked immunoabsorbent assay (ELISA) for Trypanosoma cruzi was developed using epimastigote secretion/excretion proteins (ESEA antigens) obtained from axenic culture supernatants. A panel of 120 serum samples from subjects with confirmed Chagas disease , healthy controls , and patients with other parasitic diseases was used to evaluate the new ESEA-based ELISA (ELISAESEA). This new test had excellent sensitivity (98%) and acceptable specificity (88%). Cross-reactivity was observed largely in sera from subjects with Leishmania and Ascaris infections. Using Western blotting and epimastigotes from two distinct T. cruzi isolates, several polypeptide bands with molecular masses ranging from 50 to 220 kDa were detected in pooled chagasic sera. However, the band pattern for each isolate was different. These data suggest that an inexpensive and technically simple ELISA based on ESEA antigens is a promising new tool for the diagnosis of Chagas disease.