Validation of an ELISA Method for Epstein-Barr Virus Antibodies in Dried Blood Spot Specimens and Correlation of EBV Serology with DNA Detection and Cytomegalovirus Serology
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Dried blood spot (DBS) technology offers several advantages over conventional liquid sample types in terms of cost, storage and stability especially in large population-based or field research. The Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) antibody level is widely accepted as a biomarker for psychosocial stress, based on the notion that stress triggers downregulation of cellular immune function and causes the reactivation of latent EBV and in turn, the increase of EBV IgG level as a response. Our project has two goals: First, we validated an ELISA method for measuring EBV antibody in DBS. We found a strong correlation between EBV IgG in plasma and DBS sample types (R2 = 0.90). Second, we examined the correlations between EBV serology and EBV PCR results and cytomegalovirus (CMV) serology in DBS and serum in hopes of exploring a more direct or alternate means of measuring herpesvirus reactivation. We found that EBV IgG level poorly predicted viremia in serum (R2 = 0.08) and viral load in DBS [F (1, 85) = 1.93, P = 0.17] and that EBV and CMV serology correlated weakly (r = 0.43).
- Laboratory medicine