Aims The effects of mannose-binding lectin (MBL) deficiency are well known in children and in those with a compromised immune system. However, its effects in adults are debateable, with little research having been carried out in the UK regarding infection risk in otherwise healthy adults with an MBL deficiency.
Methods Using an ELISA, we investigated the prevalence of MBL deficiency in both healthy adults and those with recurrent infection. The aim was to determine first if there was a disparity in MBL levels between the two groups and second to investigate the effect of severe deficiency.
Results Overall, the difference between the two groups for MBL level was found not to be statistically significant (p=0.203); however, there was a higher prevalence of severe deficiency (MBL<75 ng/mL) in the patients with recurrent infection (p=0.03).
Conclusions It was concluded that there is justified reason for continuing to perform the MBL test in adult patients suffering recurrent infection.