We have developed a new method to isolate Pneumocystis carinii trophozoites from experimental rat bronchoalveolar lavage specimens by using a Percoll discontinuous gradient and have identified the circulating antigens in experimental rat P. carinii pneumonia. The antigenic components of the trophozoites were compared with those of cysts by immunoblotting. A major immunoreactive band of 90,000 Da and some others of lower molecular mass were found in trophozoites. On the other hand, bands of 110,000, 50,000, and 45,000 Da were observed in cysts. The band of 50,000 Da was not identified when antitrophozoite rabbit serum preabsorbed with P. carinii-infected rat serum was used for immunoblotting. These results suggest that the molecule of 50,000 Da is the major circulating antigen in P. carinii-infected rats.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Microbiology (medical)