1921
Volume 77, Issue 3
  • ISSN: 0002-9637
  • E-ISSN: 1476-1645

Abstract

Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) detection of DNA is highly sensitive in diagnosing malaria. The specimen of choice for this assay has been whole blood samples from malaria patients. To retrospectively determine malaria infection rates in populations or cohorts for whom stored serum samples are available, we determined the ability of a nested PCR assay to detect DNA in stored serum samples. The PCR result was positive in 20 of 23 serum samples from patients with microscopy-confirmed malaria and negative in 8 of 8 healthy controls, resulting in a sensitivity of 87% and specificity of 100%. In all positive samples, species were correctly identified by PCR except for one case where a mixed infection was detected. The PCR is able to detect DNA in serum samples frozen up to 2.5 years and has the potential for the retrospective identification of malaria parasitemia in patient cohorts to determine potential interactions of malaria and other diseases such as human immunodeficiency virus/acquired immunodeficiency syndrome.

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2007-09-01
2017-11-24
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  • Received : 05 May 2007
  • Accepted : 05 Jun 2007

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