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Evaluation of Serum Aspergillus‐Specific Immunoglobulin A by Indirect ELISA for Diagnosis of Feline Upper Respiratory Tract Aspergillosis



Serological tests for diagnosis of aspergillosis in immunocompetent humans and animals are based on Aspergillus-specific IgG (As-IgG). In humans with chronic pulmonary aspergillosis, As-IgA may be detectable even if IgG titers are negative. Cats with upper respiratory tract aspergillosis (URTA) have detectable As-IgG, but their ability to mount an IgA response and its diagnostic utility are unknown.


To determine whether serum As-IgA can be detected in cats with URTA and evaluate its diagnostic utility alone or combined with As-IgG.


Twenty-three cats with URTA (Group 1), 32 cats with other respiratory diseases (Group 2), and 84 nonrespiratory controls (Group 3).


Serum As-IgA and As-IgG was measured by indirect ELISA. Optimal cutoff values were determined by receiver-operating curve analysis. Sensitivity (Se) and specificity (Sp) for URTA diagnosis were determined.


Serum IgA was detected in 91.3% of Group 1 cats. The Se of IgA detection was 78.3% and Sp was 96.9% for Group 2, 85.7% for Group 3 and 88.8% for Group 2 and 3 combined. Assay Se for IgG was 100% and Sp was 92.2%. Using combined IgA and IgG results at cutoffs optimized for Sp for IgA and Se for IgG and combined controls (Groups 2 and 3), Se for diagnosis was 100% and Sp was 91.4%.

Conclusion and clinical importance

Most cats with URTA have serum As-IgA antibodies that can be detected by ELISA. Paired measurement of serum As-IgA and IgG shows no benefit for diagnosis of feline URTA over IgG alone.

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