Development of an ELISA for the detection of scorpion venoms in sera of humans envenomed by Androctonus australis garzonii (Aag) and Buthus occitanus tunetanus (Bot): correlation with clinical severity of envenoming in Tunisia.

Abstract : A sandwich ELISA was set up for measuring scorpion venom levels in sera of accidentally envenomed humans with the aim to establish a quantitative relationship between these levels, envenoming severity and clinical symptoms. This assay used equine polyclonal F(ab')2, specific to two North African scorpion (Androctonus australis garzonii: Aag and Buthus occitanus tunetanus: Bot) venoms. The test proved to be simple, reproducible, very sensitive (detection limit = 0.9 ng/ml) and linear between 0.5 and 15 ng/ml of venom concentrations. A large survey on scorpion sting envenomings was conducted from 1993 to 1996 in Tunisia to gather accurate epidemiological, clinical and biological data from victims as well as informations on the treatment that they had received. Victims were classified into three grades (GI, GII and GIII) of increasing severity according to clinical signs of envenoming. Blood samples were collected from victims and tested by ELISA for their content of Aag and Bot venoms. A strong correlation was found between clinical symptoms of envenoming and the level of scorpion venom antigens in serum (r = 0.980). Mean serum venom concentrations were: 2.65 +/- 0.81 ng/ml in GI envenoming, 9.79 +/- 4.08 ng/ml in GII and 21.7 +/- 6.51 ng/ml in GIII. The difference between each group was statistically significant (p < 0.01). This ELISA may prove to be helpful to establish a rationale approach of specific antivenom therapy.
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Mohamed Naceur Krifi, Habib Kharrat, Khaled Zghal, Mongi Abdouli, Fekhri Abroug, et al.. Development of an ELISA for the detection of scorpion venoms in sera of humans envenomed by Androctonus australis garzonii (Aag) and Buthus occitanus tunetanus (Bot): correlation with clinical severity of envenoming in Tunisia.. Toxicon, Elsevier, 1998, 36 (6), pp.887-900. ⟨10.1016/S0041-0101(97)00136-0⟩. ⟨pasteur-01986150⟩

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