Research regarding anti-PGL-I antibodies by ELISA in wild armadillos from Brazil.
Armadillos have been involved in leprosy transmission and are considered a source of Mycobacterium leprae in numerous reports. Clinicians from certain areas of the USA consider contact with armadillos a risk factor for leprosy. However, there is a challenge associated with the role of wild armadillos perpetuating human leprosy in the American Continent. The presence of anti-PGL-I antibodies was investigated in wild nine-banded armadillos from leprosy-endemic areas in State of Espirito Santo, Brazil, by ELISA performed on serum samples from 47 armadillos. Positive ELISA was obtained from 5 (10.6%) armadillos. Infected armadillos may play some role in leprosy transmission, disseminating bacilli in the environment, perhaps making it more difficult to interrupt transmission and reduce the number of new leprosy cases. ELISA is an efficient tool for seroepidemiological investigations of Mycobacterium leprae in armadillos.