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Original Article


Sensitization to Anisakis simplex Species in the Population of Northern Morocco


N Abattouy,1 A Valero,1 J Martín-Sánchez,1 MC Peñalver,2 J Lozano1

1Parasitology Department, Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Granada. Granada, Spain
2Allergy Department, Virgen de las Nieves University Hospital. Granada, Spain

J Investig Allergol Clin Immunol 2012; Vol. 22(7): 514-519



Objective: To investigate sensitization to third-stage Anisakis simplex larvae in a randomly selected population in northern Morocco.

Methods: We studied sera obtained from clinical analysis laboratories in Tangier and Tetuouan and from fishermen at Tangier port. The age of the study population ranged from 6 to 83 years. ImmunoCAP and immunoblotting techniques were used to determine total and specific immunoglobulin (Ig) E values and the χ2 and Fisher exact tests were applied to analyze relationships between study variables.

Results: A seroprevalence of 5.1% was found, with a higher percentage of positive sera in the 31-to-43-year age group. Sensitization was not significantly associated with the origin, sex, occupation, or age of the individuals studied. In sera positive by InmunoCAP, immunoblotting studies detected numerous bands of between 7 kDa and >209 kDa, with a predominance of bands in the ~20-kDa to 24-kDa range.

Conclusions: Although no cases of human anisakiasis have been reported in Morocco to date, part of a randomly selected population in Northern Morocco shows sensitization to A simplex proteins.

Key words
: Anisakis. Morocco. Sensitization. IgE. Allergens.