The (1,3){beta}-D-glucan test as an aid to early diagnosis of invasive fungal infections following lung transplantation.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

The Fungitell assay for (1,3)β-D-glucan (BG) detection in serum has been evaluated in patients with invasive fungal infections (IFIs) and healthy controls and for the early diagnosis of IFI in cancer patients. We evaluated the BG assay for the detection of IFI in lung transplant recipients. Serial serum samples were prospectively collected from patients undergoing lung transplants at Duke Hospital. Fungal infections were classified according to revised European Organization for Research and Treatment of Cancer/Mycoses Study Group criteria. A receiver operator characteristic (ROC) curve was generated; possible causes for false-positive and false-negative tests were investigated by linear regression analysis. Seven hundred fifty-six serum specimens from 59 subjects without IFI and 41 specimens from 14 patients with proven or probable IFI were tested. The area under the ROC curve was 0.69. Based on a 60-pg/ml positive cutoff, per-patient sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value (PPV), and negative predictive value (NPV) were 64%, 9%, 14%, and 50%, respectively; per-test estimates were 71%, 59%, 9%, and 97%, respectively. The majority (92%) of patients not diagnosed with an IFI had at least one BG level of ≥60 pg/ml, and 90% had at least one BG level of ≥80 pg/ml. Respiratory colonization with mold and hemodialysis significantly affected mean BG levels. In conclusion, the accuracy of the BG test is marginal and its utility as a tool for the early diagnosis of IFI is questionable in the lung transplant population. Although the NPV of the BG test is high, the low PPV limits its utility as a screening tool for early diagnosis of IFI.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Alexander, BD; Smith, PB; Davis, RD; Perfect, JR; Reller, LB

Published Date

  • November 2010

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 48 / 11

Start / End Page

  • 4083 - 4088

PubMed ID

  • 20720025

Pubmed Central ID

  • PMC3020816

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1098-660X

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1128/JCM.01183-10


  • eng

Conference Location

  • United States