Molecular diagnosis of Toxoplasma gondii infection in cerebrospinal fluid from AIDS patients

Yenisey Alfonso, Jorge Fraga, Carlos Fonseca, Narciso Jiménez, Taimy Pinillos, Alberto J Dorta-Contreras, Raymundo Cox, Virginia Capó, Olga Pomier, Francisco Bandera, Dora Ginorio
Cerebrospinal Fluid Research 2009 March 6, 6: 2

BACKGROUND: Toxoplasmic encephalitis (TE) is one of the most common opportunistic infections in immunocompromised patients. In Cuba, despite the highly active antiretroviral therapy, TE is still the most important cause of cerebral mass lesions in patients infected with the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). The detection of Toxoplasma gondii by PCR may facilitate the diagnosis and follow-up of TE in acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) patients by direct identification of parasite DNA in clinical samples. The aim of the present study was to evaluate a rapid PCR method using the B1 gene to detect T. gondii in cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) samples from patients with suspected TE.

METHODS: CSF samples from AIDS and HIV-negative patients were analyzed. Patients were divided into two groups according to the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) criteria for AIDS-related TE: AIDS patients with suspected neurotoxoplasmosis and AIDS and HIV-negative patients with other confirmed neurological diseases but no suspicions of TE. Predictive values, diagnostic accuracy, sensitivity and specificity of the PCR B1 method were calculated.

RESULTS: The results obtained from 190 patients showed that this assay has a good sensitivity and specificity (83.3% and 95.7%, respectively) for the diagnosis of TE in AIDS patients.

CONCLUSION: PCR using the B1 gene and B22/B23 set of primers is a single, rapid and reliable method that may be valuable for discrimination between toxoplasmosis and other central nervous system (CNS) diseases.

Full Text Links

Find Full Text Links for this Article


You are not logged in. Sign Up or Log In to join the discussion.

Related Papers

Remove bar
Read by QxMD icon Read

Save your favorite articles in one place with a free QxMD account.


Search Tips

Use Boolean operators: AND/OR

diabetic AND foot
diabetes OR diabetic

Exclude a word using the 'minus' sign

Virchow -triad

Use Parentheses

water AND (cup OR glass)

Add an asterisk (*) at end of a word to include word stems

Neuro* will search for Neurology, Neuroscientist, Neurological, and so on

Use quotes to search for an exact phrase

"primary prevention of cancer"
(heart or cardiac or cardio*) AND arrest -"American Heart Association"

We want to hear from doctors like you!

Take a second to answer a survey question.