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Polymerase chain reaction for the evaluation of Schistosoma mansoni infection in two low endemicity areas of Minas Gerais, Brazil

Author(s): Gabriel Costa de Carvalho | Letícia Helena dos Santos Marques | Luciana Inácia Gomes | Ana Rabello | Luiz Cláudio Ribeiro | Kezia Katiane Gorza Scopel | Sandra Helena Cerrato Tibiriçá | Elaine Soares Coimbra | Clarice Abramo

Journal: Memórias do Instituto Oswaldo Cruz.
ISSN 0074-0276

Volume: 107;
Issue: 7;
Start page: 899;
Date: 2012;
Original page

Keywords: schistosomiasis | Kato-Katz | PCR | diagnosis | low endemicity

This study aimed to evaluate the occurrence of schistosomiasis in areas with low endemicity using polymerase chain reaction (PCR) as a diagnostic method. We analysed faecal samples from 219 individuals residing in Piau and Coronel Pacheco, state of Minas Gerais, Brazil, using a single faecal sample from each individual and two slides of the Kato-Katz technique as a gold standard. Fifteen out of the 219 samples were positive with both methods of diagnosis. One sample was diagnosed as positive by the Kato-Katz technique only and 61 were diagnosed only by PCR. The positivity rates were 7.3% with the Kato-Katz method and 34.7% with PCR. When both techniques were assumed to have 100% specificity and positive individuals were identified by both methods, the sensitivity of the Kato-Katz method was 20.8% and the PCR sensitivity was 98.7%. The Kappa index between the two techniques was 0.234, suggesting weak agreement. The assessment of a single faecal sample by PCR detected more cases of infection than the analysis of one sample with two slides using the Kato-Katz technique, suggesting that PCR can be a useful diagnostic tool, particularly in areas with low endemicity.

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