Parasite (Paris, France)

Comparison of the serological tests ICT and ELISA for the diagnosis of alveolar echinococcosis in France.

PMID 25058754


Serological diagnosis of alveolar echinococcosis (AE) is a key element for efficient patient treatment management. A rapid immunochromatography test kit (ICT) using the recombinant Em18 antigen (rEm18) was recently developed. The aim of our study was to assess this test on a panel of sera from French patients with alveolar echinococcosis and control patients. In a blind test, a total of 112 serum samples were tested including samples of AE (nxa0=xa030), cystic echinococcosis [CE] (nxa0=xa015), and polycystic echinococcosis [PE] (nxa0=xa01). For the comparison, 66 sera from patients with hepatocarcinoma, fascioliasis, toxocariasis, Caroli's disease, or autoimmune chronic active hepatitis were used. The diagnostic test sets we used were the rEm18-ICT and two validated ELISAs with rEm18 and Em2-Em18 antigens, respectively. For the ICT, 27/30 sera from AE patients, 4/15 sera from CE patients and the PE patient serum were positive. One serum from the control panel (toxocariasis) was positive for the ICT. The rEm18-ICT sensitivity (90.0%) and specificity (92.7%) for detection of Em18-specific antibodies confirmed it as a relevant tool for AE diagnosis. The rEm18-ELISA had a sensitivity of 86.7% and specificity of 91.5%, and the Em2-Em18-ELISA had a sensitivity of 96.7% and specificity of 87.8%. However, when AE patient sera are recorded as weak in intensity with the ICT, we recommend a double reading and use of a reference sample if the ICT is used for patient follow-up.