Detection of Epstein-Barr virus in autoimmune and Thalassemia patients using new Immunoblot assay


A new immunoblot assay, composed of five Epstein-Barr virus (EBV)-encoded recombinant proteins virus capsid antigen [VCA] gp125, p19, p22, early antigen [EA], and EBNA-1 IgG, was used to manifest the EBV infection and look at the antibody pattern to EBV proteins in the serum of both autoimmune disorders and Thalassemia patients and compare the observations with those in normal healthy controls. Serum samples from 35 rheumatoid arthritis patients, 20 SLE, 20 autoimmune hypothyroid diseases, 35 Thalassemia patients and 20 healthy controls were tested for EBV IgG antibodies by an immunoblot assay (Euroline). The results showed that the high percentage recorded was 50% in acute infection. Followed by 30% at late infection, while late phase with loss EBNA-1 and reactivated infection were 10% compared to the normal healthy controls. Our study showed an increased EBV activation among the autoimmune patient groups compared to the normal healthy controls. Further studies are required to delineate the association between the etiology of autoimmune disorders and EBV.