Point-of-care test for tuberculosis: a boon in diagnosis

Submitted: January 17, 2023
Accepted: April 17, 2023
Published: April 28, 2023
Abstract Views: 1244
PDF: 469
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Rapid diagnosis of tuberculosis (TB) is an effective measure to eradicate this infectious disease worldwide. Traditional methods for screening TB patients do not provide an immediate diagnosis and thus delay treatment. There is an urgent need for the early detection of TB through point-of-care tests (POCTs). Several POCTs are widely available at primary healthcare facilities that assist in TB screening. In addition to the currently used POCTs, advancements in technology have led to the discovery of newer methods that provide accurate and fast information independent of access to laboratory facilities. In the present article, the authors tried to include and describe the potential POCTs for screening TB in patients. Several molecular diagnostic tests, such as nucleic acid amplification tests, including GeneXpert and TB-loop-mediated isothermal amplification, are currently being used as POCTs. Besides these methods, the pathogenic component of Mycobacterium tuberculosis can also be utilized as a biomarker for screening purposes through immunological assays. Similarly, the host immune response to infection has also been utilized as a marker for the diagnosis of TB. These novel biomarkers might include Mtb85, interferon-γ inducible protein-10, volatile organic compounds, acute-phase proteins, etc. Radiological tests have also been observed as POCTs in the TB screening POCT panel. Various POCTs are performed on samples other than sputum, which further eases the screening process. These POCTs should not require large-scale manpower and infrastructure. Hence, POCT should be able to identify patients with M. tuberculosis infection at the primary healthcare level only. There are several other advanced techniques that have been proposed as future POCTs and have been discussed in the present article.

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How to Cite

Tayal, Devika, Prabhpreet Sethi, and Prerna Jain. 2023. “Point-of-Care Test for Tuberculosis: A Boon in Diagnosis”. Monaldi Archives for Chest Disease 94 (1). https://doi.org/10.4081/monaldi.2023.2528.