Comparison of the FilmArray assay and in-house real-time PCR for detection of respiratory infection.
Recently, molecular methods capable of detecting almost all microbial agents that may cause acute respiratory infection have been introduced. The FilmArray Respiratory Panel assay, which integrates nucleic acid extraction, nested amplification and detection in a reaction pouch preloaded with all reagents required for detection of 17 viruses and 3 bacteria, was compared with an in-house real-time PCR that detects these agents in 8 parallel amplifications. When 128 clinical samples representing 18 of these agents were analysed by both assays the agreement was excellent, with kappa values ranging between 0.54 and 1.0. Discordances were mainly observed for adenovirus, but not when version 1.7 of FilmArray was used. The results show that these assays detect a wide range of pathogens with similar performance. FilmArray provides results after approximately 1 h, including ≈ 5 min hands-on time, and does not require advanced equipment or expertise in molecular diagnostics, making it a useful point-of-care-test for acute respiratory infections.
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