Performance Comparison of Three Rapid Tests for the Diagnosis of Drug-Resistant Tuberculosis

Citation: Catanzaro A, Rodwell TC, Catanzaro DG, Garfein RS, Jackson RL, Seifert M, et al. (2015) Performance Comparison of Three Rapid Tests for the Diagnosis of Drug-Resistant Tuberculosis. PLoS ONE 10(8): e0136861. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0136861
Published: August 31, 2015

Background: The aim of this study was to compare the performance of several recently developed assays for the detection of multi- and extensively drug-resistant tuberculosis (M/XDR-TB) in a large, multinational field trial.
Methods: Samples from 1,128 M/XDR-TB suspects were examined by Line Probe Assay (LPA), Pyrosequencing (PSQ), and Microscopic Observation of Drug Susceptibility (MODS) and compared to the BACTEC MGIT960 reference standard to detect M/XDR-TB directly from patient sputum samples collected at TB clinics in India, Moldova, and South Africa.
Results: Specificity for all three assays was excellent: 97–100% for isoniazid (INH), rifampin (RIF), moxifloxacin (MOX) and ofloxacin (OFX) and 99–100% for amikacin (AMK), capreomycin (CAP) and kanamycin (KAN) resistance. Sensitivities were lower, but still very good: 94–100% for INH, RIF, MOX and OFX, and 84–90% for AMK and CAP, but only 48–62% for KAN. In terms of agreement, statistically significant differences were only found for detection of RIF (MODS outperformed PSQ) and KAN (MODS outperformed LPA and PSQ) resistance. Mean time-to-result was 1.1 days for LPA and PSQ, 14.3 days for MODS, and 24.7 days for MGIT.
Conclusions: All three rapid assays evaluated provide clinicians with timely detection of resistance to the drugs tested; with molecular results available one day following laboratory receipt of samples. In particular, the very high specificity seen for detection of drug resistance means that clinicians can use the results of these rapid tests to avoid the use of toxic drugs to which the infecting organism is resistant and develop treatment regiments that have a higher likelihood of yielding a successful outcome.


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