BMC Res Notes 2018 Sep 12;11(1):664. Epub 2018 Sep 12.
The Institute for Protein Environmental Affinity Surveys (PEAS Institute), Linköping, Sweden.
Objective: Cough and fever are the initial symptoms of lower respiratory infection. Severe cases might be fatal. Therefore, particularly in the non-equipped centers, the lack of diagnostic methods to identify the severe cases has resulted in overconsumption of antibiotics. On the basis of the knowledge about non-specific immune response at the site of injury, we developed a colorimetric dip-test that shows abrupt, sensitive and quite specific color change upon contact with sputum in the cases of lower respiratory infection. We further explored the mechanism of the test.
Results: We detected deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) and hepatocyte growth factor in the sputum of patients that suffered from respiratory infection (n = 18). The results differed significantly (P < 0.0001) from age-matched patients (n = 18) with other respiratory disorders and highly correlated with the index-test results (Spearman Rank test = 0.84). DNA with a concentration more than 0.03 mg/ml induced a visible and stable color change on index-test within 1 min. The test recognized all of the cases with respiratory infection and the specificity was 72%. With a high negative predictive value. The index test detects, inter alia, cell-free DNA in sputum and might safely rule-out respiratory infection in 2/3 of cases that present symptoms of acute respiratory infection.