Publications by authors named "Gerald H Mazurek"

26 Publications

  • Page 1 of 1

Tuberculosis Screening, Testing, and Treatment of U.S. Health Care Personnel: Recommendations from the National Tuberculosis Controllers Association and CDC, 2019.

MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep 2019 May 17;68(19):439-443. Epub 2019 May 17.

The 2005 CDC guidelines for preventing Mycobacterium tuberculosis transmission in health care settings include recommendations for baseline tuberculosis (TB) screening of all U.S. health care personnel and annual testing for health care personnel working in medium-risk settings or settings with potential for ongoing transmission (1). Using evidence from a systematic review conducted by a National Tuberculosis Controllers Association (NTCA)-CDC work group, and following methods adapted from the Guide to Community Preventive Services (2,3), the 2005 CDC recommendations for testing U.S. health care personnel have been updated and now include 1) TB screening with an individual risk assessment and symptom evaluation at baseline (preplacement); 2) TB testing with an interferon-gamma release assay (IGRA) or a tuberculin skin test (TST) for persons without documented prior TB disease or latent TB infection (LTBI); 3) no routine serial TB testing at any interval after baseline in the absence of a known exposure or ongoing transmission; 4) encouragement of treatment for all health care personnel with untreated LTBI, unless treatment is contraindicated; 5) annual symptom screening for health care personnel with untreated LTBI; and 6) annual TB education of all health care personnel.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.15585/mmwr.mm6819a3DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6522077PMC
May 2019

Impact of Larger Sputum Volume on Xpert MTB/RIF Assay Detection of Mycobacterium tuberculosis in Smear-Negative Individuals with Suspected Tuberculosis.

J Clin Med 2017 Aug 7;6(8). Epub 2017 Aug 7.

Clinical HIV Research Unit, Department of Internal Medicine, School of Clinical Medicine, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Witwatersrand, Johannesburg 2092, South Africa.

As a strategy to improve the sensitivity of nucleic acid-based testing in acid-fast bacilli (AFB) negative samples, larger volumes of sputum (5-10 mL) were tested with Xpert MTB/RIF from 176 individuals with smear-negative sputum undergoing tuberculosis evaluation. Despite larger volumes, this strategy had a suboptimal sensitivity of 50% (4/8).
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/jcm6080078DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5575580PMC
August 2017

Assessment of the QuantiFERON-TB Gold In-Tube test for the detection of Mycobacterium tuberculosis infection in United States Navy recruits.

PLoS One 2017 17;12(5):e0177752. Epub 2017 May 17.

Division of Tuberculosis Elimination, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, Georgia, United States of America.

Background: Immunologic tests such as the tuberculin skin test (TST) and QuantiFERON®-TB Gold In-Tube test (QFT-GIT) are designed to detect Mycobacterium tuberculosis infection, both latent M. tuberculosis infection (LTBI) and infection manifesting as active tuberculosis disease (TB). These tests need high specificity to minimize unnecessary treatment and high sensitivity to allow maximum detection and prevention of TB.

Methods: Estimate QFT-GIT specificity, compare QFT-GIT and TST results, and assess factor associations with test discordance among U.S. Navy recruits.

Results: Among 792 subjects with completed TST and QFT-GIT, 42(5.3%) had TST indurations ≥10mm, 23(2.9%) had indurations ≥15mm, 14(1.8%) had positive QFT-GIT results, and 5(0.6%) had indeterminate QFT-GITs. Of 787 subjects with completed TST and determinate QFT-GIT, 510(64.8%) were at low-risk for infection, 277(35.2%) were at increased risk, and none had TB. Among 510 subjects at low-risk (presumed not infected), estimated TST specificity using a 15mm cutoff, 99.0% (95%CI: 98.2-99.9%), and QFT-GIT specificity, 98.8% (95%CI: 97.9-99.8%), were not significantly different (p>0.99). Most discordance was among recruits at increased risk of infection, and most was TST-positive but QFT-GIT-negative discordance. Of 18 recruits with TST ≥15mm but QFT-GIT negative discordance, 14(78%) were at increased risk. TB prevalence in country of birth was the strongest predictor of positive TST results, positive QFT-GIT results, and TST-positive but QFT-GIT-negative discordance. Reactivity to M. avium purified protein derivative (PPD) was associated with positive TST results and with TST-positive but QFT-GIT-negative discordance using a 10 mm cutoff, but not using a 15 mm cutoff or with QFT-GIT results.

Conclusions: M. tuberculosis infection prevalence was low, with the vast majority of infection occurring in recruits with recognizable risks. QFT-GIT and TST specificities were high and not significantly different. Negative QFT-GIT results among subjects with TST induration ≥15 mm who were born in countries with high TB prevalence, raise concerns.
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http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0177752PLOS
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5435309PMC
September 2017

Comparison of Sputum-Culture Conversion for Mycobacterium bovis and M. tuberculosis.

Emerg Infect Dis 2017 03;23(3):456-462

Current US guidelines recommend longer treatment for tuberculosis (TB) caused by pyrazinamide-resistant organisms (e.g., Mycobacterium bovis) than for M. tuberculosis TB. We compared treatment response times for patients with M. bovis TB and M. tuberculosis TB reported in the United States during 2006-2013. We included culture-positive, pulmonary TB patients with genotyping results who received standard 4-drug treatment at the time of diagnosis. Time to sputum-culture conversion was defined as time between treatment start date and date of first consistently culture-negative sputum. We analyzed 297 case-patients with M. bovis TB and 30,848 case-patients with M. tuberculosis TB. After 2 months of treatment, 71% of M. bovis and 65% of M. tuberculosis TB patients showed conversion of sputum cultures to negative. Likelihood of culture conversion was higher for M. bovis than for M. tuberculosis, even after controlling for treatment administration type, sex, and a composite indicator of bacillary burden.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3201/eid2303.161916DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5382750PMC
March 2017

Official American Thoracic Society/Infectious Diseases Society of America/Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Clinical Practice Guidelines: Diagnosis of Tuberculosis in Adults and Children.

Clin Infect Dis 2017 Jan;64(2):111-115

University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, Little Rock.

Background: Individuals infected with Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb) may develop symptoms and signs of disease (tuberculosis disease) or may have no clinical evidence of disease (latent tuberculosis infection [LTBI]). Tuberculosis disease is a leading cause of infectious disease morbidity and mortality worldwide, yet many questions related to its diagnosis remain.

Methods: A task force supported by the American Thoracic Society, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and Infectious Diseases Society of America searched, selected, and synthesized relevant evidence. The evidence was then used as the basis for recommendations about the diagnosis of tuberculosis disease and LTBI in adults and children. The recommendations were formulated, written, and graded using the Grading, Recommendations, Assessment, Development and Evaluation (GRADE) approach.

Results: Twenty-three evidence-based recommendations about diagnostic testing for latent tuberculosis infection, pulmonary tuberculosis, and extrapulmonary tuberculosis are provided. Six of the recommendations are strong, whereas the remaining 17 are conditional.

Conclusions: These guidelines are not intended to impose a standard of care. They provide the basis for rational decisions in the diagnosis of tuberculosis in the context of the existing evidence. No guidelines can take into account all of the often compelling unique individual clinical circumstances.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/cid/ciw778DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5504475PMC
January 2017

Official American Thoracic Society/Infectious Diseases Society of America/Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Clinical Practice Guidelines: Diagnosis of Tuberculosis in Adults and Children.

Clin Infect Dis 2017 Jan 8;64(2):e1-e33. Epub 2016 Dec 8.

University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, Little Rock.

Background: Individuals infected with Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb) may develop symptoms and signs of disease (tuberculosis disease) or may have no clinical evidence of disease (latent tuberculosis infection [LTBI]). Tuberculosis disease is a leading cause of infectious disease morbidity and mortality worldwide, yet many questions related to its diagnosis remain.

Methods: A task force supported by the American Thoracic Society, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and Infectious Diseases Society of America searched, selected, and synthesized relevant evidence. The evidence was then used as the basis for recommendations about the diagnosis of tuberculosis disease and LTBI in adults and children. The recommendations were formulated, written, and graded using the Grading, Recommendations, Assessment, Development and Evaluation (GRADE) approach.

Results: Twenty-three evidence-based recommendations about diagnostic testing for latent tuberculosis infection, pulmonary tuberculosis, and extrapulmonary tuberculosis are provided. Six of the recommendations are strong, whereas the remaining 17 are conditional.

Conclusions: These guidelines are not intended to impose a standard of care. They provide the basis for rational decisions in the diagnosis of tuberculosis in the context of the existing evidence. No guidelines can take into account all of the often compelling unique individual clinical circumstances.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/cid/ciw694DOI Listing
January 2017

Evaluation of Xpert MTB/RIF Versus AFB Smear and Culture to Identify Pulmonary Tuberculosis in Patients With Suspected Tuberculosis From Low and Higher Prevalence Settings.

Clin Infect Dis 2016 May 2;62(9):1081-8. Epub 2016 Feb 2.

Division of Infectious Disease, Rutgers New Jersey Medical School, Newark.

Background: The Xpert MTB/RIF (Xpert) assay is a rapid nucleic acid amplification test widely used in settings of high tuberculosis prevalence to detect tuberculosis as well asrpoBmutations associated with rifampin resistance. Data are needed on the diagnostic performance of Xpert in lower-prevalence settings to inform appropriate use for both tuberculosis detection and the need for respiratory isolation.

Methods: Xpert was compared to 2 sputum samples, each evaluated with acid-fast bacilli (AFB) smear and mycobacterial culture using liquid and solid culture media, from participants with suspected pulmonary tuberculosis from the United States, Brazil, and South Africa.

Results: Of 992 participants enrolled with evaluable results, 22% had culture-confirmed tuberculosis. In 638 (64%) US participants, 1 Xpert result demonstrated sensitivity of 85.2% (96.7% in participants with AFB smear-positive [AFB(+)] sputum, 59.3% with AFB smear-negative [AFB(-)] sputum), specificity of 99.2%, negative predictive value (NPV) of 97.6%, and positive predictive value of 94.9%. Results did not differ between higher- and low-prevalence settings. A second Xpert assay increased overall sensitivity to 91.1% (100% if AFB(+), 71.4% if AFB(-)), with specificity of 98.9%. In US participants, a single negative Xpert result predicted the absence of AFB(+)/culture-positive tuberculosis with an NPV of 99.7%; NPV of 2 Xpert assays was 100%, suggesting a role in removing patients from airborne infection isolation. Xpert detected tuberculosis DNA and mutations associated with rifampin resistance in 5 of 7 participants with rifampin-resistant, culture-positive tuberculosis. Specificity for rifampin resistance was 99.5% and NPV was 98.9%.

Conclusions: In the United States, Xpert testing performed comparably to 2 higher-tuberculosis-prevalence settings. These data support the use of Xpert in the initial evaluation of tuberculosis suspects and in algorithms assessing need for respiratory isolation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/cid/ciw035DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4826450PMC
May 2016

Tuberculin Skin Tests versus Interferon-Gamma Release Assays in Tuberculosis Screening among Immigrant Visa Applicants.

Tuberc Res Treat 2014 6;2014:217969. Epub 2014 Mar 6.

Center for Global Health, CDC, Mail Stop D-68, 1600 Clifton Road NE, Atlanta, GA 30333, USA ; Division of Global Migration and Quarantine, CDC, Mail Stop E-03, 1600 Clifton Road NE, Atlanta, GA 30333, USA.

Objective. Use of tuberculin skin tests (TSTs) and interferon gamma release assays (IGRAs) as part of tuberculosis (TB) screening among immigrants from high TB-burden countries has not been fully evaluated. Methods. Prevalence of Mycobacterium tuberculosis infection (MTBI) based on TST, or the QuantiFERON-TB Gold test (QFT-G), was determined among immigrant applicants in Vietnam bound for the United States (US); factors associated with test results and discordance were assessed; predictive values of TST and QFT-G for identifying chest radiographs (CXRs) consistent with TB were calculated. Results. Of 1,246 immigrant visa applicants studied, 57.9% were TST positive, 28.3% were QFT-G positive, and test agreement was 59.4%. Increasing age was associated with positive TST results, positive QFT-G results, TST-positive but QFT-G-negative discordance, and abnormal CXRs consistent with TB. Positive predictive values of TST and QFT-G for an abnormal CXR were 25.9% and 25.6%, respectively. Conclusion. The estimated prevalence of MTBI among US-bound visa applicants in Vietnam based on TST was twice that based on QFT-G, and 14 times higher than a TST-based estimate of MTBI prevalence reported for the general US population in 2000. QFT-G was not better than TST at predicting abnormal CXRs consistent with TB.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2014/217969DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3967820PMC
April 2014

Automation of an interferon-γ release assay and comparison to the tuberculin skin test for screening basic military trainees for Mycobacterium tuberculosis infection.

Mil Med 2014 Mar;179(3):333-41

Epidemiology Consult Services, U.S. Air Force School of Aerospace Medicine, 2510 Fifth Street, Building 840, W318K, Wright-Patterson AFB, OH 45433-7913.

We automated portions of the QuantiFERON-TB Gold In-Tube test (QFT-GIT) and assessed its quality when performed concurrently with the tuberculin skin test (TST) among U.S. Air Force basic military trainees (BMTs). The volume of blood collected for QFT-GIT was monitored. At least one of the three tubes required for QFT-GIT had blood volume outside the recommended 0.8- to 1.2-mL range for 688 (29.0%) of 2,373 subjects who had their blood collected. Of the 2,124 subjects who had TST and QFT-GIT completed, TST was positive for 0.6%; QFT-GIT was positive for 0.3% and indeterminate for 2.0%. Among 2,081 subjects with completed TST and determinate QFT-GIT results, overall agreement was 99.5% but positive agreement was 5.6%. Specificity among the 1,546 low-risk BMTs was identical (99.7%). Indeterminate QFT-GIT results were 2.7 times more likely when mitogen tubes contained >1.2 mL blood than when containing 0.8- to 1.2-mL blood. Automation can facilitate QFT-GIT completion, especially if the recommended volume of blood is collected. Mycobacterium tuberculosis infection prevalence among BMTs based on TST and QFT-GIT is similar and low. Selectively testing those with significant risk may be more appropriate than universal testing of all recruits.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.7205/MILMED-D-13-00364DOI Listing
March 2014

Variability of the QuantiFERON®-TB gold in-tube test using automated and manual methods.

PLoS One 2014 23;9(1):e86721. Epub 2014 Jan 23.

Division of Tuberculosis Elimination, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, Georgia, United States of America.

Background: The QuantiFERON®-TB Gold In-Tube test (QFT-GIT) detects Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb) infection by measuring release of interferon gamma (IFN-γ) when T-cells (in heparinized whole blood) are stimulated with specific Mtb antigens. The amount of IFN-γ is determined by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). Automation of the ELISA method may reduce variability. To assess the impact of ELISA automation, we compared QFT-GIT results and variability when ELISAs were performed manually and with automation.

Methods: Blood was collected into two sets of QFT-GIT tubes and processed at the same time. For each set, IFN-γ was measured in automated and manual ELISAs. Variability in interpretations and IFN-γ measurements was assessed between automated (A1 vs. A2) and manual (M1 vs. M2) ELISAs. Variability in IFN-γ measurements was also assessed on separate groups stratified by the mean of the four ELISAs.

Results: Subjects (N = 146) had two automated and two manual ELISAs completed. Overall, interpretations were discordant for 16 (11%) subjects. Excluding one subject with indeterminate results, 7 (4.8%) subjects had discordant automated interpretations and 10 (6.9%) subjects had discordant manual interpretations (p = 0.17). Quantitative variability was not uniform; within-subject variability was greater with higher IFN-γ measurements and with manual ELISAs. For subjects with mean TB Responses ±0.25 IU/mL of the 0.35 IU/mL cutoff, the within-subject standard deviation for two manual tests was 0.27 (CI95 = 0.22-0.37) IU/mL vs. 0.09 (CI95 = 0.07-0.12) IU/mL for two automated tests.

Conclusion: QFT-GIT ELISA automation may reduce variability near the test cutoff. Methodological differences should be considered when interpreting and using IFN-γ release assays (IGRAs).
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http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0086721PLOS
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3900587PMC
September 2014

Within-subject interlaboratory variability of QuantiFERON-TB gold in-tube tests.

PLoS One 2012 6;7(9):e43790. Epub 2012 Sep 6.

Division of Tuberculosis Elimination, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, Georgia, United States of America.

Background: The QuantiFERON®-TB Gold In-Tube test (QFT-GIT) is a viable alternative to the tuberculin skin test (TST) for detecting Mycobacterium tuberculosis infection. However, within-subject variability may limit test utility. To assess variability, we compared results from the same subjects when QFT-GIT enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays (ELISAs) were performed in different laboratories.

Methods: Subjects were recruited at two sites and blood was tested in three labs. Two labs used the same type of automated ELISA workstation, 8-point calibration curves, and electronic data transfer. The third lab used a different automated ELISA workstation, 4-point calibration curves, and manual data entry. Variability was assessed by interpretation agreement and comparison of interferon-γ (IFN-γ) measurements. Data for subjects with discordant interpretations or discrepancies in TB Response >0.05 IU/mL were verified or corrected, and variability was reassessed using a reconciled dataset.

Results: Ninety-seven subjects had results from three labs. Eleven (11.3%) had discordant interpretations and 72 (74.2%) had discrepancies >0.05 IU/mL using unreconciled results. After correction of manual data entry errors for 9 subjects, and exclusion of 6 subjects due to methodological errors, 7 (7.7%) subjects were discordant. Of these, 6 (85.7%) had all TB Responses within 0.25 IU/mL of the manufacturer's recommended cutoff. Non-uniform error of measurement was observed, with greater variation in higher IFN-γ measurements. Within-subject standard deviation for TB Response was as high as 0.16 IU/mL, and limits of agreement ranged from -0.46 to 0.43 IU/mL for subjects with mean TB Response within 0.25 IU/mL of the cutoff.

Conclusion: Greater interlaboratory variability was associated with manual data entry and higher IFN-γ measurements. Manual data entry should be avoided. Because variability in measuring TB Response may affect interpretation, especially near the cutoff, consideration should be given to developing a range of values near the cutoff to be interpreted as "borderline," rather than negative or positive.
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http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0043790PLOS
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3435391PMC
May 2013

Discordance among commercially available diagnostics for latent tuberculosis infection.

Am J Respir Crit Care Med 2012 Feb 8;185(4):427-34. Epub 2011 Dec 8.

Division of Preventive Medicine, Walter Reed Army Institute of Research, Silver Spring, MD 20910, USA.

Rationale: There is uncertainty regarding how to interpret discordance between tests for latent tuberculosis infection.

Objectives: The objective of this study was to assess discordance between commercially available tests for latent tuberculosis in a low-prevalence population, including the impact of nontuberculous mycobacteria.

Methods: This was a cross-sectional comparison study among 2,017 military recruits at Fort Jackson, South Carolina, from April to June 2009. Several tests were performed simultaneously with a risk factor questionnaire, including (1) QuantiFERON-TB Gold In-Tube test, (2) T-SPOT.TB test, (3) tuberculin skin test, and (4) Battey skin test using purified protein derivative from the Battey bacillus.

Measurements And Main Results: In this low-prevalence population, the specificities of the three commercially available diagnostic tests were not significantly different. Of the 88 subjects with a positive test, only 10 (11.4%) were positive to all three tests; 20 (22.7%) were positive to at least two tests. Bacille Calmette-Guérin vaccination, tuberculosis prevalence in country of birth, and Battey skin test reaction size were associated with tuberculin skin test-positive, IFN-γ release assay-negative test discordance. Increasing agreement between the three tests was associated with epidemiologic criteria indicating risk of infection and with quantitative test results.

Conclusions: For most positive results the three tests identified different people, suggesting that in low-prevalence populations most discordant results are caused by false-positives. False-positive tuberculin skin test reactions associated with reactivity to nontuberculous mycobacteria and bacille Calmette-Guérin vaccination may account for a proportion of test discordance observed.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1164/rccm.201107-1244OCDOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3297098PMC
February 2012

Multiple cytokines are released when blood from patients with tuberculosis is stimulated with Mycobacterium tuberculosis antigens.

PLoS One 2011 21;6(11):e26545. Epub 2011 Nov 21.

Division of Scientific Resources, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, Georgia, United States of America.

Background: Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb) infection may cause overt disease or remain latent. Interferon gamma release assays (IGRAs) detect Mtb infection, both latent infection and infection manifesting as overt disease, by measuring whole-blood interferon gamma (IFN-γ) responses to Mtb antigens such as early secreted antigenic target-6 (ESAT-6), culture filtrate protein 10 (CFP-10), and TB7.7. Due to a lack of adequate diagnostic standards for confirming latent Mtb infection, IGRA sensitivity for detecting Mtb infection has been estimated using patients with culture-confirmed tuberculosis (CCTB) for whom recovery of Mtb confirms the infection. In this study, cytokines in addition to IFN-γ were assessed for potential to provide robust measures of Mtb infection.

Methods: Cytokine responses to ESAT-6, CFP-10, TB7.7, or combinations of these Mtb antigens, for patients with CCTB were compared with responses for subjects at low risk for Mtb infection (controls). Three different multiplexed immunoassays were used to measure concentrations of 9 to 20 different cytokines. Responses were calculated by subtracting background cytokine concentrations from cytokine concentrations in plasma from blood stimulated with Mtb antigens.

Results: Two assays demonstrated that ESAT-6, CFP-10, ESAT-6+CFP-10, and ESAT-6+CFP-10+TB7.7 stimulated the release of significantly greater amounts of IFN-γ, IL-2, IL-8, MCP-1 and MIP-1β for CCTB patients than for controls. Responses to combination antigens were, or tended to be, greater than responses to individual antigens. A third assay, using whole blood stimulation with ESAT-6+CFP-10+TB7.7, revealed significantly greater IFN-γ, IL-2, IL-6, IL-8, IP-10, MCP-1, MIP-1β, and TNF-α responses among patients compared with controls. One CCTB patient with a falsely negative IFN-γ response had elevated responses with other cytokines.

Conclusions: Multiple cytokines are released when whole blood from patients with CCTB is stimulated with Mtb antigens. Measurement of multiple cytokine responses may improve diagnostic sensitivity for Mtb infection compared with assessment of IFN-γ alone.
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http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0026545PLOS
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3221668PMC
April 2012

Impact of targeted testing for latent tuberculosis infection using commercially available diagnostics.

Clin Infect Dis 2011 Aug;53(3):234-44

Division of Preventive Medicine, Walter Reed Army Institute of Research, Silver Spring, Maryland, USA.

Background: The interferon-γ release assays (IGRAs) are increasingly being used as an alternative to the tuberculin skin test (TST). Although IGRAs may have better specificity and certain logistic advantages to the TST, their use may contribute to overtesting of low-prevalence populations if testing is not targeted. The objective of this study was to evaluate the accuracy of a risk factor questionnaire in predicting a positive test result for latent tuberculosis infection using the 3 commercially available diagnostics.

Methods: A cross-sectional comparison study was performed among recruits undergoing Army basic training at Fort Jackson, South Carolina, from April through June 2009. The tests performed included: (1) a risk factor questionnaire; (2) the QuantiFERON Gold In-Tube test (Cellestis Limited, Carnegie, Victoria, Australia); (3) the T-SPOT.TB test (Oxford Immunotec Limited, Abingdon, United Kingdom); and (4) the TST (Sanofi Pasteur Ltd., Toronto, Ontario, Canada). Prediction models used logistic regression to identify factors associated with positive test results. RFQ prediction models were developed independently for each test.

Results: Use of a 4-variable model resulted in 79% sensitivity, 92% specificity, and a c statistic of 0.871 in predicting a positive TST result. Targeted testing using these risk factors would reduce testing by >90%. Models predicting IGRA outcomes had similar specificities as the skin test but had lower sensitivities and c statistics.

Conclusions: As with the TST, testing with IGRAs will result in false-positive results if the IGRAs are used in low-prevalence populations. Regardless of the test used, targeted testing is critical in reducing unnecessary testing and treatment.

Clinical Trial Registration: NCT00804713.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/cid/cir321DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3202318PMC
August 2011

Unusual interferon gamma measurements with QuantiFERON-TB Gold and QuantiFERON-TB Gold In-Tube tests.

PLoS One 2011 8;6(6):e20061. Epub 2011 Jun 8.

Division of Tuberculosis Elimination, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, Georgia, United States of America.

Introduction: Interferon gamma (IFN-γ) release assays, such as QuantiFERON®-TB Gold test (QFT-G) and QuantiFERON®-TB Gold In-Tube test (QFT-GIT) are designed to detect M. tuberculosis (Mtb) infection. Recognition of unusual IFN-γ measurements may help indicate inaccurate results.

Methods: We examined QFT-G and QFT-GIT results from subjects who had two or more tests completed. We classified unusual IFN-γ measurements as: 1) High Nil Concentration (HNC) when IFN-γ concentration in plasma from unstimulated blood exceeded 0.7 IU/mL; 2) Low Mitogen Response (LMR) when Mitogen Response was <0.5 IU/mL; 3) Very Low Mitogen Response (VLMR) when Mitogen Response was ≤-0.5 IU/mL; and 4) Very Low Antigen Response (VLAR) when the response to a Mtb antigen was ≤-0.35 IU/mL and ≤-0.5 times the IFN-γ concentration in plasma from unstimulated blood.

Results: Among 5,309 results from 1,728 subjects, HNC occurred in 234 (4.4%) tests for 162 subjects, LMR in 108 (2.0%) tests for 85 subjects, VLMR in 22 (0.4%) tests for 21 subjects, and VLAR in 41 (0.8%) tests for 39 subjects. QFT-GIT had fewer HNC, VLMR, and VLAR (p = 0.042, 0.004, and 0.067 respectively); QFT-G had fewer LMR (p = 0.005). Twenty-four (51.6%) of 47 subjects with positive results and HNC were negative or indeterminate by all other tests. Thirteen (61.9%) of 21 subjects with positive results and LMR were negative or indeterminate by all other tests.

Conclusion: Unusual IFN-γ measurements including HNC, LMR, VLMR, and VLAR were encountered in small numbers, and in most instances were not seen on simultaneously or subsequently performed tests. To avoid erroneous diagnosis of Mtb infection, IGRAs with unusual IFN-γ measurements should be repeated with another blood sample and interpreted with caution if they recur.
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http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0020061PLOS
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3110578PMC
October 2011

Updated guidelines for using Interferon Gamma Release Assays to detect Mycobacterium tuberculosis infection - United States, 2010.

MMWR Recomm Rep 2010 Jun;59(RR-5):1-25

Division of Tuberculosis Elimination, National Center for HIV, STD, and TB Prevention, CDC, Atlanta, GA 30333, USA.

n 2005, CDC published guidelines for using the QuantiFERON-TB Gold test (QFT-G) (Cellestis Limited, Carnegie, Victoria, Australia) (CDC. Guidelines for using the QuantiFERON-TB Gold test for detecting Mycobacterium tuberculosis infection, United States. MMWR;54[No. RR-15]:49-55). Subsequently, two new interferon gamma (IFN- gamma) release assays (IGRAs) were approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) as aids in diagnosing M. tuberculosis infection, both latent infection and infection manifesting as active tuberculosis. These tests are the QuantiFERON-TB Gold In-Tube test (QFT-GIT) (Cellestis Limited, Carnegie, Victoria, Australia) and the T-SPOT.TB test (T-Spot) (Oxford Immunotec Limited, Abingdon, United Kingdom). The antigens, methods, and interpretation criteria for these assays differ from those for IGRAs approved previously by FDA. For assistance in developing recommendations related to IGRA use, CDC convened a group of experts to review the scientific evidence and provide opinions regarding use of IGRAs. Data submitted to FDA, published reports, and expert opinion related to IGRAs were used in preparing these guidelines. Results of studies examining sensitivity, specificity, and agreement for IGRAs and TST vary with respect to which test is better. Although data on the accuracy of IGRAs and their ability to predict subsequent active tuberculosis are limited, to date, no major deficiencies have been reported in studies involving various populations. This report provides guidance to U.S. public health officials, health-care providers, and laboratory workers for use of FDA-approved IGRAs in the diagnosis of M. tuberculosis infection in adults and children. In brief, TSTs and IGRAs (QFT-G, QFT-GIT, and T-Spot) may be used as aids in diagnosing M. tuberculosis infection. They may be used for surveillance purposes and to identify persons likely to benefit from treatment. Multiple additional recommendations are provided that address quality control, test selection, and medical management after testing. Although substantial progress has been made in documenting the utility of IGRAs, additional research is needed that focuses on the value and limitations of IGRAs in situations of importance to medical care or tuberculosis control. Specific areas needing additional research are listed.
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June 2010

Prospective comparison of tuberculin skin test and QuantiFERON-TB Gold In-Tube assay for the detection of latent tuberculosis infection among healthcare workers in a low-incidence setting.

Infect Control Hosp Epidemiol 2009 Nov;30(11):1123-6

Division of Respiratory Disease Studies, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Morgantown, West Virginia 26505, USA.

We compared the results of the tuberculin skin test with the results of the QuantiFERON-TB Gold In-Tube (QFT-GIT) assay among 182 low-risk healthcare workers. Overall agreement and specificity were high, but the tests did not agree on positive results. Only 2 of 5 positive QFT-GIT assay results could be confirmed with repeat analyses. Indeterminate results were associated with potential immunosuppression.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1086/644754DOI Listing
November 2009

Interferon-gamma release assays for diagnosing mycobacterium tuberculosis infection in renal dialysis patients.

Clin J Am Soc Nephrol 2008 Sep 11;3(5):1357-63. Epub 2008 Jun 11.

Division of Tuberculosis Elimination, National Center for HIV, STD, and TB Prevention, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, Georgia, USA.

Background And Objectives: End-stage renal disease (ESRD) patients are at high risk for tuberculosis (TB). IFN-gamma release assays that assess immune responses to specific TB antigens offer potential advantages over tuberculin skin testing (TST) in screening such patients for Mycobacterium tuberculosis infection. This study sought to determine whether IFN-gamma release assay results are more closely associated with recent TB exposure than TST results.

Design, Setting, Participants, And Measures: Prospective cohort investigation of patients at a hemodialysis center with a smear-positive case of TB. Patients without a history of TB underwent initial and repeat testing with TST, and with the IFN-gamma assays QuantiFERON-TB Gold (QFT-G) and ELISPOT test. Outcome measures included the prevalence of positive test results, identification of factors associated with positive results, and test result discordance.

Results: A total of 100 (47% foreign born; median age, 55 yr; age range, 18 to 83 yr) of 124 eligible patients were enrolled. Twenty-six persons had positive TST results, 21 had positive QFT-G results, and 27 had positive ELISPOT results. Patients with TB case contact were likely to have a positive QFT-G result (P = 0.02) and ELISPOT results (P = 0.04), whereas TB case contact was not associated with positive TST results (P = 0.7). Positive TST results were associated with foreign birth (P = 0.04) and having had a TST in the previous year (P = 0.04).

Conclusions: Positive IFN-gamma assay results were more closely associated with recent TB exposure than were positive TST results. QFT-G and ELISPOT might offer a better method for detecting TB infection in ESRD patients.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.2215/CJN.01010208DOI Listing
September 2008

Prospective comparison of the tuberculin skin test and 2 whole-blood interferon-gamma release assays in persons with suspected tuberculosis.

Clin Infect Dis 2007 Oct 24;45(7):837-45. Epub 2007 Aug 24.

Division of Tuberculosis Elimination, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, GA 30333, USA.

Background: Interferon-gamma release assays (IGRAs) are attractive alternatives to the tuberculin skin test (TST) for detecting Mycobacterium tuberculosis infection. However, the inability to definitively confirm the presence of most M. tuberculosis infections hampers assessment of IGRA accuracy. Although IGRAs are primarily indicated for the detection of latent tuberculosis infection, we sought to determine the sensitivity of the TST and 2 whole-blood IGRAs (QuantiFERON-TB assay [QFT] and QuantiFERON-TB Gold assay [QFT-G]) in situations in which infection is confirmed by recovery of M. tuberculosis by culture.

Methods: We conducted a prospective, multicenter, cross-sectional comparison study in which 148 persons suspected to have tuberculosis were tested simultaneously with the TST, QFT, and QFT-G.

Results: M. tuberculosis was cultured from samples from 69 (47%) of 148 persons suspected to have tuberculosis; the TST induration was > or = 5 mm for 51 (73.9%) of the 69 subjects (95% confidence interval [CI], 62.5%-82.8%). The QFT indicated tuberculosis infection for 48 (69.6%) of the 69 subjects (95% CI, 57.9%-79.2%) and was indeterminate for 7 (10.1%). The QFT-G yielded positive results for 46 (66.7%) of the 69 subjects (95% CI, 54.9%-76.7%) and indeterminate results for 9 subjects (13.0%). If subjects with indeterminate QFT-G results were excluded, 46 (76.7%) of 60 subjects (95% CI, 64.6%-85.6%) had positive TST results, and the same number of subjects had positive QFT-G results. HIV infection was associated with false-negative TST results but not with false-negative QFT-G results.

Conclusions: The TST, QFT, and QFT-G have similar sensitivity in persons with culture-confirmed infection. As with the TST, negative QFT and QFT-G results should not be used to exclude the diagnosis of tuberculosis in persons with suggestive signs or symptoms.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1086/521107DOI Listing
October 2007

Detection of Mycobacterium tuberculosis infection in United States Navy recruits using the tuberculin skin test or whole-blood interferon-gamma release assays.

Clin Infect Dis 2007 Oct 24;45(7):826-36. Epub 2007 Aug 24.

Division of Tuberculosis Elimination, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, GA 30333, USA.

Background: Military personnel are at risk for acquiring Mycobacterium tuberculosis infection because of activities in close quarters and in regions with a high prevalence of tuberculosis (TB). Accurate tests are needed to avoid unnecessary treatment because of false-positive results and to avoid TB because of false-negative results and failure to diagnose and treat M. tuberculosis infection. We sought to estimate the specificity of the tuberculin skin test (TST) and 2 whole-blood interferon-gamma release assays (QuantiFERON-TB assay [QFT] and QuantiFERON-TB Gold assay [QFT-G]) and to identify factors associated with test discordance.

Methods: A cross-sectional comparison study was performed in which 856 US Navy recruits were tested for M. tuberculosis infection using the TST, QFT, and QFT-G.

Results: Among the study subjects, 5.1% of TSTs resulted in an induration > or = 10 mm, and 2.9% of TSTs resulted in an induration > or = 15 mm. Eleven percent of QFT results and 0.6% of QFT-G results were positive. Assuming recruits at low risk for M. tuberculosis exposure were not infected, estimates of TST specificity were 99.1% (95% confidence interval [CI], 98.3%-99.9%) when a 15-mm cutoff value was used and 98.4% (95% CI, 97.3%-99.4%) when a 10-mm cutoff value was used. The estimated QFT specificity was 92.3% (95% CI, 90.0%-94.5%), and the estimated QFT-G specificity was 99.8% (95% CI, 99.5%-100%). Recruits who were born in countries with a high prevalence of TB were 26-40 times more likely to have discordant results involving a positive TST result and a negative QFT-G result than were recruits born in countries with a low prevalence of TB. Nineteen (50%) of 38 recruits with this type of discordant results had a TST induration > or = 15 mm.

Conclusions: The QFT-G and TST are more specific than the QFT. No statistically significant difference in specificity between the QFT-G and TST was found using a 15-mm induration cutoff value. The discordant results observed among recruits with increased risk of M. tuberculosis infection may have been because of lower TST specificity or lower QFT-G sensitivity. Negative QFT-G results for recruits born in countries where TB is highly prevalent and whose TST induration was > or = 15 mm suggest that the QFT-G may be less sensitive than the TST. Additional studies are needed to determine the risk of TB when TST and QFT-G results are discordant.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1086/521106DOI Listing
October 2007

Guidelines for using the QuantiFERON-TB Gold test for detecting Mycobacterium tuberculosis infection, United States.

MMWR Recomm Rep 2005 Dec;54(RR-15):49-55

On May 2, 2005, a new in vitro test, QuantiFERON-TB Gold (QFT-G, Cellestis Limited, Carnegie, Victoria, Australia), received final approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration as an aid for diagnosing Mycobacterium tuberculosis infection. This test detects the release of interferon-gamma (IFN-g) in fresh heparinized whole blood from sensitized persons when it is incubated with mixtures of synthetic peptides representing two proteins present in M. tuberculosis: early secretory antigenic target-6 (ESAT-6) and culture filtrate protein-10 (CFP-10). These antigens impart greater specificity than is possible with tests using purified protein derivative as the tuberculosis (TB) antigen. In direct comparisons, the sensitivity of QFT-G was statistically similar to that of the tuberculin skin test (TST) for detecting infection in persons with untreated culture-confirmed tuberculosis (TB). The performance of QFT-G in certain populations targeted by TB control programs in the United States for finding latent TB infection is under study. Its ability to predict who eventually will have TB disease has not been determined, and years of observational study of substantial populations would be needed to acquire this information. In July 2005, CDC convened a meeting of consultants and researchers with expertise in the field to review scientific evidence and clinical experience with QFT-G. On the basis of this review and discussion, CDC recommends that QFT-G may be used in all circumstances in which the TST is currently used, including contact investigations, evaluation of recent immigrants, and sequential-testing surveillance programs for infection control (e.g., those for health-care workers). This report provides specific cautions for interpreting negative QFT-G results in persons from selected populations. This report is aimed at public health officials, health-care providers, and laboratory workers with responsibility for TB control activities in the United States.
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December 2005

Mycobacterium tuberculosis infection in health care workers in rural India: comparison of a whole-blood interferon gamma assay with tuberculin skin testing.

JAMA 2005 Jun;293(22):2746-55

Department of Medicine, Mahatma Gandhi Institute of Medical Sciences, Sevagram, India.

Context: Mycobacterium tuberculosis infection in health care workers has not been adequately studied in developing countries using newer diagnostic tests.

Objectives: To estimate latent tuberculosis infection prevalence in health care workers using the tuberculin skin test (TST) and a whole-blood interferon gamma (IFN-gamma) assay; to determine agreement between the tests; and to compare their correlation with risk factors.

Design, Setting, And Participants: A cross-sectional comparison study of 726 health care workers aged 18 to 61 years (median age, 22 years) with no history of active tuberculosis conducted from January to May 2004, at a rural medical school in India. A total of 493 (68%) of the health care workers had direct contact with patients with tuberculosis and 514 (71%) had BCG vaccine scars.

Interventions: Tuberculin skin testing was performed using 1-TU dose of purified protein derivative RT23, and the IFN-gamma assay was performed by measuring IFN-gamma response to early secreted antigenic target 6, culture filtrate protein 10, and a portion of tuberculosis antigen TB7.7.

Main Outcome Measures: Agreement between TST and the IFN-gamma assay, and comparison of the tests with respect to their association with risk factors.

Results: A large proportion of the health care workers were latently infected; 360 (50%) were positive by either TST or IFN-gamma assay, and 226 (31%) were positive by both tests. The prevalence estimates of TST and IFN-gamma assay positivity were comparable (41%; 95% confidence interval [CI], 38%-45% and 40%; 95% CI, 37%-43%, respectively). Agreement between the tests was high (81.4%; kappa = 0.61; 95% CI, 0.56-0.67). Increasing age and years in the health profession were significant risk factors for both IFN-gamma assay and TST positivity. BCG vaccination had little impact on TST and IFN-gamma assay results.

Conclusions: Our study showed high latent tuberculosis infection prevalence in Indian health care workers, high agreement between TST and IFN-gamma assay, and similar association between positive test results and risk factors. Although TST and IFN-gamma assay appear comparable in this population, they have different performance and operational characteristics; therefore, the decision to select one test over the other will depend on the population, purpose of testing, and resource availability.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1001/jama.293.22.2746DOI Listing
June 2005

Proteomic profiling of intact mycobacteria by matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization time-of-flight mass spectrometry.

Anal Chem 2004 Oct;76(19):5769-76

National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 1095 Willowdale Road, Morgantown, WV 26505, USA.

Current methods for the identification of mycobacteria in culture are time-consuming, requiring as long as 12 weeks for positive identification. One potential approach to rapid mycobacterial identification is to utilize proteomic profiling of cultures by matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization time-of-flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF MS). In this report, we have applied MALDI-TOF MS to proteomic profiling of cultured microorganisms representing six species of the genus Mycobacterium. We find that analysis of acetonitrile/trifluoroacetic acid cellular extracts produces data similar to that of the analysis of deposited whole cells, while minimizing human contact with the microorganisms and rendering them nonviable. A matrix composition of alpha-cyano-4-hydroxycinnamic acid with fructose yields highly reproducible MALDI-TOF spectra. Statistical analysis of MALDI-TOF MS data allows differentiation of each individual mycobacterial species on the basis of unique mass fingerprints. The methodology allows identification of a number of unique (potentially diagnostic) biomarkers as targets for protein identification by MS/MS experiments. In addition, we observe a number of signals common to all mycobacterial species studied by MALDI-TOF MS, which may be genus-specific biomarkers. The potentially genus-specific biomarkers occur at low mass (<2 kDa) and are likely to be lipids and cell wall components such as mycolic acids. This study demonstrates the potential for mass spectrometry-based identification/classification of mycobacteria.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/ac049410mDOI Listing
October 2004

Specific detection of tuberculosis infection: an interferon-gamma-based assay using new antigens.

Am J Respir Crit Care Med 2004 Jul 1;170(1):59-64. Epub 2004 Apr 1.

Research Institute of Tuberculosis, 3-1-24 Matsuyama, Kiyose, Tokyo 204-8533, Japan.

The tuberculin skin test for immunologic diagnosis of Mycobacterium tuberculosis infection has many limitations, including being confounded by bacillus Calmette-Guérin (BCG) vaccination or exposure to nontuberculous mycobacteria. M. tuberculosis-specific antigens that are absent from BCG and most nontuberculous mycobacteria have been identified. We examined the use of two of these antigens, CFP-10 and ESAT-6, in a whole blood IFN-gamma assay as a diagnostic test for tuberculosis in BCG-vaccinated individuals. Because of the lack of an accurate standard with which to compare new tests for M. tuberculosis infection, specificity of the whole blood IFN-gamma assay was estimated on the basis of data from people with no identified risk for M. tuberculosis exposure (216 BCG-vaccinated Japanese adults) and sensitivity was estimated on the basis of data from 118 patients with culture-confirmed M. tuberculosis infection who had received less than 1 week of treatment. Using a combination of CFP-10 and ESAT-6 responses, the specificity of the test for the low-risk group was 98.1% and the sensitivity for patients with M. tuberculosis infection was 89.0%. The results demonstrate that the whole blood IFN-gamma assay using CFP-10 and ESAT-6 was highly specific and sensitive for M. tuberculosis infection and was unaffected by BCG vaccination status.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1164/rccm.200402-179OCDOI Listing
July 2004

Guidelines for using the QuantiFERON-TB test for diagnosing latent Mycobacterium tuberculosis infection. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

MMWR Recomm Rep 2003 Jan;52(RR-2):15-8

Division of Tuberculosis Elimination, National Center for HIV, STD, and TB Prevention, USA.

Until 2001, the only test used to diagnose latent tuberculosis infection (LTBI) was the tuberculin skin test (TST). However, in 2001, a new test (QuantiFERON-TB or QFT; manufactured by Cellestis Limited, Carnegie, Victoria, Australia) that measures the release of interferon-gamma in whole blood in response to stimulation by purified protein derivative was approved by the Food and Drug Administration. This statement provides interim recommendations for using and interpreting QFT. As with TST, interpretation and indicated applications of QFT differ for persons according to their risk for LTBI and for developing tuberculosis (TB). This report provides guidance for public health officials, health-care providers, and laboratorians with responsibility for TB control activities in the United States in their efforts to incorporate QFT testing for detecting and treating LTBI. Regardless of the test used to identify LTBI, testing should be primarily targeted at diagnosing infected patients who will benefit from treatment.
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January 2003
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