Section 80
Chapter 79,995

Validation of an Indirect Immunofluorescence Assay and Commercial Q Fever Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay for use in Macropods

Tolpinrud, A.; Stenos, J.; Chaber, A.-L.; Devlin, J.M.; Herbert, C.; Pas, A.; Dunowska, M.; Stevenson, M.A.; Firestone, S.M.

Journal of Clinical Microbiology 60(7): E0023622


ISSN/ISBN: 1098-660X
PMID: 35652310
Accession: 079994998

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Kangaroos are considered to be an important reservoir of Q fever in Australia, although there is limited knowledge on the true prevalence and distribution of coxiellosis in Australian macropod populations. Serological tests serve as useful surveillance tools, but formal test validation is needed to be able to estimate true seroprevalence rates, and few tests have been validated to screen wildlife species for Q fever. In this study, we modified and optimized a phase-specific indirect immunofluorescence assay (IFA) for the detection of IgG antibodies against Coxiella burnetii in macropod sera. The assay was validated against the commercially available ID Screen Q fever indirect multispecies enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) kit (IDVet, Grabels, France) to estimate the diagnostic sensitivity and specificity of each assay, using Bayesian latent class analysis. A direct comparison of the two tests was performed by testing 303 serum samples from 10 macropod populations from the east coast of Australia and New Zealand. The analysis indicated that the IFA had relatively high diagnostic sensitivity (97.6% [95% credible interval [CrI], 88.0 to 99.9]) and diagnostic specificity (98.5% [95% CrI, 94.4 to 99.9]). In comparison, the ELISA had relatively poor diagnostic sensitivity (42.1% [95% CrI, 33.7 to 50.8]) and similar diagnostic specificity (99.2% [95% CrI, 96.4 to 100]) using the cutoff values recommended by the manufacturer. The estimated true seroprevalence of C. burnetii exposure in the macropod populations included in this study ranged from 0% in New Zealand and Victoria, Australia, up to 94.2% in one population from New South Wales, Australia.

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