WASHINGTON, D.C. — In-house real-time polymerase chain reaction assays for detection and identification of intestinal protozoa outperformed commercial multiplex PCR kits, according to data presented at ICAAC 2014.
“In searching for better diagnostic tools to find pathogenic parasites in stool samples in our hemisphere, we tried to find an assay so we can do PCR instead of time-consuming microscopy, because it is not very sensitive, and because it cannot differentiate E.histolytica, which is pathogenic, with apathogenic E.dispar,” Gitte Hartmeyer, MD, department of clinical microbiology, Odense University Hospital, Denmark, told Healio.com/Gastroenterology.“We made our own in-house PCR, compared it to two commercial kits and found that our own in-house PCR was more sensitive than the commercial kits, especially in detecting Giardia.”
Hartmeyer and colleagues analyzed 29 microscopy positive stools and five negative stools, four of which were clinically strongly suspected to be positive, for G.lamblia, C.parvum/C.hominis and E.histolytica using the in-house PCR (Test A), RIDA GENE Parasitic Stool Panel (Test B) and LightMix Modular Gastroenteritis Assays (Test C). Test A detected G. lamblia in four more samples than B and in three more samples than C. Test A also detected Cryptosporidium in one more sample than both B and C, and E. histolytica detection was equivalent between all three assays.
“In general there was good agreement between the results obtained by the different PCR assays,” the researchers concluded, though “the in-house assays for G.lamblia and C.parvum/C.hominis detected more cases than the commercial test kits.” – by Adam Leitenberger
For more information:
Hartmeyer G. Abstract P-1123. Presented at: Interscience Conference on Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy; Sept. 5-9, 2014; Washington, D.C.
Disclosure: The researchers report no relevant financial disclosures.