Other Tuberculosis Diagnostics

Our laboratory is continuously interested in improving existing and creating new diagnostics for the detection of Tuberculosis in humans and animals. By using our expertise in biochemistry, multi-omics and other fields, we have generated several strategies for the quick diagnostic of TB, improving into existing commercial POC tests. We are interested in revising the latest developments in TB diagnostics and finding strategies to improve the time to results, increase the sensitivity and specificity of commercially available tests, or improving its ability to detect several drug resistances.

Representative Papers

  • García, Juan Ignacio, Holden Kelley V, Johanna Meléndez, Rosa Alejandra Alvarez de León, Alejandra Castillo, Sabeen Sidiki, Kizil A Yusoof, et al. (2019) 2019. “Improved Alere Determine Lipoarabinomannan Antigen Detection Test for the Diagnosis of Human and Bovine Tuberculosis by Manipulating Urine and Milk”. Scientific Reports 9 (1): 18012. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-019-54537-9.

    Tuberculosis (TB) disease still kills 1-person every 21-seconds. Few TB diagnostic tests are considered truly appropriate for point of care settings. The WHO-endorsed immunodiagnostic Alere Determine Lipoarabinomannan Ag-test (LAM-test) detects Mycobacterium tuberculosis complex LAM in urine, and its use is recommended for TB diagnosis among HIV co-infected individuals with low CD4 T-cell counts. Here we found that a simple 15-minute enzymatic treatment at room temperature of LAM-spiked urine with α-mannosidase (for human TB), and LAM-spiked milk with combined lactase and caseinase (for bovine TB), enhanced 10-fold the detection levels of the LAM-test and thus, improved the detection of LAM by the LAM-test in urine and milk that otherwise could be missed in the field. Future separate clinical research studies specifically designed to address the potential of these findings are required.

  • Kelley, Holden, V, Sarah M Waibel, Sabeen Sidiki, Cristina Tomatis-Souverbielle, Julia M Scordo, Garret Hunt, N Barr, et al. (2020) 2020. “Accuracy of Two Point-of-Care Tests for Rapid Diagnosis of Bovine Tuberculosis at Animal Level Using Non-Invasive Specimens”. Scientific Reports 10 (1): 5441. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-020-62314-2.

    Bovine tuberculosis (BTB) testing in cattle requires a significant investment of time, equipment, and labor. Novel, rapid, cheaper and accurate methods are needed. The Alere Determine TB lipoarabinomannan antigen (LAM-test) is a World Health Organization-endorsed point-of-care urine test designed to detect active TB disease in humans. The Lionex Animal TB Rapid Test (Lionex-test) is a novel animal specific TB diagnostic blood test. An animal level analysis was performed using urine (n = 141) and milk (n = 63) samples from depopulated BTB-suspected cattle to test the accuracy of the LAM-test when compared to results of positive TB detection by any routine BTB tests (BOVIGAM, necropsy, histology, culture, PCR) that are regularly performed by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). The agreement between the urine LAM-test and USDA standard tests were poor at varying testing time points. The same milk samples did not elicit statistically significant agreement with the Lionex-test, although positive trends were present. Hence, we cannot recommend the LAM-test as a valid BTB diagnostic test in cattle using either urine or milk. The Lionex-test's production of positive trends using milk samples suggests larger sample sizes may validate the Lionex-test in accurately diagnosing BTB in cattle using milk samples, potentially providing a quick and reliable field test for BTB.