An indirect peroxidase technique was developed for determination of IgA antibodies to varicella zoster virus (VZV). The antigen consisted of acetone-fixed trypsinised VZV-infected cells. Rabbit antihuman IgA peroxidase conjugate was used to detect human IgA antibodies bound to viral antigen. In parallel IgG antibodies to VZV were determined by an immunoperoxidase antibody to membrane antigen (IPAMA) technique. Varicella zoster virus IgA antibodies were detected in all five varicella and seven zoster patients. No VZV IgA antibodies (less than 2) were detected in 45 healthy control sera. Neither were they found in paired sera of five patients with herpes simplex infection, five patients with human cytomegalovirus infection and two patients with Epstein-Barr virus infection. Application of immunoperoxidase IgA technique in serodiagnosis of primary and reactivated VZV infections is discussed.
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