Among the four known Streptococcal nucleases comprising of DNase A, B, C and D; DNase B is the most common, and determination of the levels of antibody to DNase B (ADB) is often used to confirm a clinical diagnosis of Streptococcus pyogenes/group A Streptococcal (GAS) infection. The commonly used assays for antibodies that neutralize DNase B or streptolysin O activity use partially purified antigens that often fail to detect antibody changes subsequent to culture documented infections. Therefore, an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) was developed employing his-tagged recombinant DNase B as plate antigen for comparison to the commonly used DNA methyl green micromethod (DMGM). DNAs from various Streptococcal species were screened for presence of dnaseB gene by PCR. Measurements of ADB in sera collected from subjects belonging to different ages, and ethnic groups were used to compare the two methods. dnaseB was not detected by PCR in DNA samples isolated from different strains of group B (GBS), C (GCS) and G (GGS) Streptococci. The ADB based ELISA proved to be highly sensitive and more responsive to changes in antibody concentration than DMGM. Use of recombinant DNase B eliminates the variability associated with the enzyme, partially purified from Streptococcal culture supernatants from various commercial sources and may provide a more reliable source of antigen to a wider group of laboratories concerned with GAS diagnosis.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
This work is financially supported by NIH grant AI20016 . We thank Dr. M.G. Karmarkar, Department of Microbiology, Seth G.S. Medical College and KEM Hospital, Mumbai, India, for kindly providing the Indian normal, rheumatic fever and rheumatic heart disease patient sera.
- DNA methyl green micromethod
- Group A Streptococcus
- His-tagged DNase B
- Streptococcus pyogenes