Serologic Detection of Coccidioidomycosis Antibodies in Northeast Brazil
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Coccidioidomycosis is a systemic infection caused by Coccidioides spp. The disease is endemic in Brazil but its incidence is underreported as it is not a notifiable disease. This article presents the results of a serologic survey carried out with 229 volunteers in northeast Brazil by the immunodiffusion (ID) test with commercial Coccidioides spp. antigens. The commercial ID test detected 15 individuals without clinical diagnosis of the disease and two individuals in treatment for coccidioidomycosis. Regarding the epidemiological data, most of the positive individuals were male, between 18 and 65 years of age and were engaged in armadillo hunting. Three women who had never participated in armadillo hunts also displayed positive results for coccidioidal antibodies. Besides armadillo hunts, exposure to environmental dust in endemic areas may account for the serologic response detected in the study. The data from this study suggest the importance of performing epidemiological surveys for coccidioidomycosis in order to understand the prevalence of this disease in Brazil.
KeywordsCoccidioidomycosis Serologic survey Immunodiffusion Brazil
This work was supported by CNPq (National Scientific and Technological Research Council, Process 620161/2006-0) and FAPESP (São Paulo State Research Foundation, Process 04/14270-0).
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