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Viruses 2011, 3(8), 1320-1331; doi:10.3390/v3081320

The Prevalence and Significance of HTLV-I/II Seroindeterminate Western Blot Patterns

Neuroimmunology Branch, National Institute of Neurological Diseases and Stroke, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD 20892, USA
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 13 June 2011 / Revised: 22 July 2011 / Accepted: 23 July 2011 / Published: 2 August 2011
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Recent Developments in HTLV Research)
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Human T-lymphotropic virus type I (HTLV-I) infects an estimated 15–20 million persons worldwide. A number of diseases have been associated with the virus including adult T-cell leukemia (ATL), HTLV-associated myelopathy/tropical spastic paraparesis (HAM/TSP), HTLV-I uveitis, and HTLV-I-associated infective dermatitis. Once it was shown that there is an increased risk for developing HAM/TSP associated with blood transfusion, screening for HTLV-1 among blood banks was implemented in Japan, United States, France, and the Netherlands. This process includes detection by an enzyme immunoassay (EIA) followed by a confirmatory Western blot (WB) in which recombinant proteins specific for HTLV-I Env glycoproteins are incorporated into WB strips. HTLV-I seropositive results are defined by the presence of antibodies against either gp46 or gp62/68 (both Env protein bands) and either p19, p24, or p53 (one of the gag bands). HTLV-II seropositivity is confirmed by the presence of rgp46-II. However, numerous cases have been documented in which serum samples are reactive by EIA, but an incomplete banding pattern is displayed by subsequent confirmatory WB. Although the significance of these HTLV-I/II seroindeterminates is unclear, it may suggest a much higher incidence of exposure to HTLV-I/II than previously estimated.
Keywords: HTLV-I; seroindeterminate; Western blot HTLV-I; seroindeterminate; Western blot
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Abrams, A.; Akahata, Y.; Jacobson, S. The Prevalence and Significance of HTLV-I/II Seroindeterminate Western Blot Patterns. Viruses 2011, 3, 1320-1331.

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