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BACKGROUND: Allergic reactions to mosquito bites are an increasing clinical concern. Due to the lack of availability of mosquito salivary allergens, they are underdiagnosed. Here, we reported a newly cloned mosquito Aedes (Ae.) aegypti salivary allergen. METHODS: A cDNA encoding a 30-kDa Ae. aegypti salivary protein, designated Aed a 3, was isolated from an expression library. The full-length cDNA was cloned into a baculovirus expression vector, and recombinant Aed a 3 (rAed a 3) was expressed, purified, and characterized. Skin prick tests with purified rAed a 3 and Ae. aegypti bite tests were performed in 43 volunteers. Serum rAed a 3-specific IgE levels were measured in 28 volunteers. RESULTS: The primary nucleotide sequence, deduced amino acid sequence, and IgE-binding sites of Aed a 3 were identified. rAed a 3-selected antibodies recognized a 30-kDa Ae. aegypti saliva protein. rAed a 3 bound IgE in mosquito-allergic volunteers and the binding could be inhibited by the addition of natural mosquito extract dose dependently. Immediate skin test reactions to rAed a 3 correlated significantly with mosquito bite-induced reactions. Of the bite test-positive volunteers, 32% had a positive rAed a 3 skin test and 46% had specific IgE. No bite test-negative volunteers reacted to rAed a 3 in either the skin tests or the IgE assays, confirming the specificity of the assay. CONCLUSIONS: Aed a 3 that corresponds to the Aegyptin protein is a major mosquito salivary allergen. Its recombinant form has biological activity and is suitable for use in skin tests and specific IgE assays in mosquito-allergic individuals.

Original publication




Journal article



Publication Date





621 - 628


Aed a 3, Aedes aegypti, insect allergy, mosquito, salivary allergen/antigen, Adult, Aedes, Allergens, Amino Acid Sequence, Animals, Cloning, Molecular, DNA, Complementary, Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay, Female, Humans, Immunoglobulin E, Insect Bites and Stings, Insect Proteins, Models, Molecular, Protein Binding, Protein Conformation, Recombinant Proteins, Salivary Proteins and Peptides, Sensitivity and Specificity, Sequence Analysis, DNA, Skin Tests