Wilson, Shona6; Jones, Frances M.6; van Dam, Govert J.3; Corstjens, Paul L. A. M.3; Riveau, Gilles4; Fitzsimmons, Colin M.6; Sacko, Moussa5; Vennervald, Birgitte J7; Dunne, David W.6
1 Parasitology and Aquatic Diseases, Department of Veterinary Disease Biology, Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences, Københavns Universitet2 University of Cambridge3 Leiden University Medical Center4 Pasteur Institute5 Institut National de Recherche en Santé Publique6 University of Cambridge7 Parasitology and Aquatic Diseases, Department of Veterinary Disease Biology, Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences, Københavns Universitet
BACKGROUND: Immunity that reduces worm fecundity and, in turn, reduces morbidity is proposed for Schistosoma haematobium, a parasite of major public health importance. Mathematical models of epidemiological trends suggest that antifecundity immunity is dependent on antibody responses to adult-worm-derived antigen. METHODS: For a Malian cohort (age, 5-29 years) residing in high-transmission fishing villages or a moderate-transmission village, worm fecundity was assessed using the ratio of urinary egg excretion to levels of circulating anodic antigen, a Schistosoma-specific antigen that is steadily secreted by adult worms. Fecundity was modeled against host age, infection transmission intensity, and antibody responses specific to soluble worm antigen (SWA), tegument allergen-like 1, and 28-kDa glutathione-S-transferase. RESULTS: Worm fecundity declined steadily until a host age of 11 years. Among children, host age and transmission were negatively associated with worm fecundity. A significant interaction term between host age and transmission indicates that antifecundity immunity develops earlier in high-transmission areas. SWA immunoglobulin G1 (IgG1) levels explained the effect of transmission on antifecundity immunity. CONCLUSION: Antifecundity immunity, which is likely to be protective against severe morbidity, develops rapidly during childhood. Antifecundity immunity is associated with SWA-IgG1, with higher infection transmission increasing this response at an earlier age, leading to earlier development of antifecundity immunity.
Journal of Infectious Diseases, 2014, Vol 210, Issue 12, p. 2009-2016