Multiplex 5' nuclease-quantitative PCR for diagnosis of relapsing fever in a large Tanzanian cohort.

Published

Journal Article

Relapsing fever (RF) is caused by tick- and louse-borne Borrelia spp., is characterized by recurrent fever, and is often misdiagnosed as malaria. Because of submicroscopic bacteremia, microscopy can be insensitive between febrile bouts. We designed a multiplex quantitative PCR (qPCR) assay to distinguish RF Borrelia from Plasmodium falciparum and P. vivax. The assay specifically (100%) amplified pathogenic RF Borrelia (1 copy/reaction). We then tested blood from participants within a Tanzanian cohort assessed at scheduled intervals and with fever. Among 8,617 blood samples from 2,057 participants surveyed routinely, 7 (0.08%) samples and 7 (0.3%) participants had RF DNA (median, 4.4 × 10(3) copies/ml). Of 382 samples from 310 febrile persons, 15 (3.9%) samples from 13 (4.2%) participants had RF DNA (median, 7.9 × 10(2) copies/ml). Five (1.3%) samples from 4 (1.3%) participants were found to harbor Borrelia by microscopy. We conclude that multiplex qPCR holds promise for improved clinical diagnosis and epidemiologic assessment of RF.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Reller, ME; Clemens, EG; Schachterle, SE; Mtove, GA; Sullivan, DJ; Dumler, JS

Published Date

  • September 2011

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 49 / 9

Start / End Page

  • 3245 - 3249

PubMed ID

  • 21775542

Pubmed Central ID

  • 21775542

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1098-660X

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1128/JCM.00940-11

Language

  • eng

Conference Location

  • United States