Performance of the (1,3) -Beta-D-Glucan Assay on Bronchoalveolar Lavage Fluid for the Diagnosis of Invasive Pulmonary Aspergillosis

Linder, K.A.; Kauffman, C.A.; Zhou, S.; Richards, B.J.; Kleiboeker, S.; Miceli, M.H.

Mycopathologia 185(5): 925-929


ISSN/ISBN: 1573-0832
PMID: 32815095
DOI: 10.1007/s11046-020-00479-0
Accession: 072297663

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Detection of (1,3)-beta-D-glucan (BDG), a component of the cell wall of many fungi, was studied in bronchoalveolar lavage fluid (BALF) as a possible aid for the diagnosis of proven/probable invasive pulmonary aspergillosis (IPA). BDG was measured on stored BALF from 13 patients with EORTC/MSGERC defined proven/probable IPA and 26 matched control patients without IPA. The median BALF BDG was 80 pg/mL (range < 45-8240 pg/mL) in the IPA cohort and 148 pg/mL (range < 45-5460 pg/mL) in the non-IPA cohort. Using a positive cutoff of ≥ 80 pg/mL, sensitivity was 54% and specificity was 38%. Higher cutoff values led to improvement in specificity but a dramatic decrease in sensitivity. ROC/AUC analysis was unable to identify an optimal cutoff value at which test performance was enhanced: AUC 0.43, 95% CI 0.24-0.63. When the BDG assay was performed on BALF, neither sensitivity nor specificity was sufficient for use in the diagnosis of IPA.