BMC medicine 2017 11 0115(1) 188 doi 10.1186/s12916-017-0952-z
HIV-associated immune defects inhibit tuberculosis (TB) diagnosis, promote development of extrapulmonary TB and paucibacillary pulmonary TB cases with atypical radiographic features, and increase TB relapse rates. We therefore assessed the diagnostic performance of a novel assay that directly quantitates serum levels of the Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb) virulence factor 10-kDa culture filtrate protein (CFP-10) to overcome limitations associated with detecting Mtb bacilli in sputum or tissue biopsies.
This study analyzed HIV-positive adults enrolled in a large, population-based TB screening and surveillance project, the Houston Tuberculosis Initiative, between October 1995 and September 2004, and assigned case designations using standardized criteria. Serum samples were trypsin-digested and immunoprecipitated for an Mtb-specific peptide of CFP-10 that was quantified by liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry for rapid and sensitive TB diagnosis.
Among the 1053 enrolled patients, 110 met all inclusion criteria; they included 60 tuberculosis cases (12 culture-negative TB), including 9 relapse TB cases, and 50 non-TB controls, including 15 cases with history of TB. Serum CFP-10 levels diagnosed 89.6% (77.3-96.5) and 66.7% (34.9-90.1) of culture-positive and culture-negative TB cases, respectively, and exhibited 88% (75.7-95.5) diagnostic specificity in all non-TB controls. Serum antigen detection and culture, respectively, identified 85% (73.4-92.9) and 80.0% (67.3-88.8) of all 60 TB cases.
Quantitation of the Mtb virulence factor CFP-10 in serum samples of HIV-infected subjects diagnosed active TB cases with high sensitivity and specificity and detected cases missed by the gold standard of Mtb culture. These results suggest that serum CFP-10 quantitation holds great promise for the rapid diagnosis of suspected TB cases in patients who are HIV-infected.