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Millions of people worldwide are infected with filarial nematodes, responsible for lymphatic filariasis (LF) and other diseases causing chronic disablement. Elimination programs have resulted in a substantial reduction of the rate of infection in certain areas creating a need for improved diagnostic tools to establish robust population surveillance and avoid LF resurgence. Glycans from parasitic helminths are emerging as potential antigens for use in diagnostic assays. However, despite its crucial role in host-parasite interactions, filarial glycosylation is still largely, structurally, and functionally uncharacterized. Therefore, we investigated the glycan repertoire of the filarial nematode Brugia malayi. Glycosphingolipid and N-linked glycans were extracted from several life-stages using enzymatic release and characterized using a combination of MALDI-TOF-MS and glycan sequencing techniques. Next, glycans were purified by HPLC and printed onto microarrays to assess the host anti-glycan antibody response. Comprehensive glycomic analysis of B. malayi revealed the presence of several putative antigenic motifs such as phosphorylcholine and terminal glucuronic acid. Glycan microarray screening showed a recognition of most B. malayi glycans by immunoglobulins from rhesus macaques at different time points after infection, which permitted the characterization of the dynamics of anti-glycan immunoglobulin G and M during the establishment of brugian filariasis. A significant level of IgG binding to the parasite glycans was also detected in infected human plasma, while IgG binding to glycans decreased after anthelmintic treatment. Altogether, our work identifies B. malayi glycan antigens and reveals antibody responses from the host that could be exploited as potential markers for LF. Copyright © 2022 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.


Laudine M C Petralia, Angela van Diepen, Lena A Lokker, D Linh Nguyen, Erliyani Sartono, Vishal Khatri, Ramaswamy Kalyanasundaram, Christopher H Taron, Jeremy M Foster, Cornelis H Hokke. Mass Spectrometric and Glycan Microarray-Based Characterization of the Filarial Nematode Brugia malayi Glycome Reveals Anionic and Zwitterionic Glycan Antigens. Molecular & cellular proteomics : MCP. 2022 May;21(5):100201

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PMID: 35065273

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