More than 80% of the global burden of the Plasmodium vivax is contributed by mainly three countries (India, Indonesia, and Pakistan). Reports from last decades have highlighted the occurrence of severe P. vivax malaria which was earlier considered to be benign. The recent trends of increasing P. vivax–associated morbidity and mortality emphasizes the need for early and accurate diagnosis of P. vivax malaria for the timely management of patients. Microscopy is considered a gold standard but needs experienced laboratory technologists. Over the last few years, Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) is being used as a highly sensitive and specific test but it requires expensive equipment which limits its use in the field. Therefore, in the present study, utility of visually improved loop-mediated isothermal amplification (LAMP) for the detection of P. vivax was evaluated targeting 18SrRNA gene in 145 microscopically confirmed P. vivax and 20 P. vivax negative patients. Sensitivity and specificity of LAMP was assessed with respect to microscopy and multiplex nested PCR (nPCR). Results of the LAMP assay was also correlated with rapid diagnostic test, multiplex nPCR and real-time PCR results. Overall, sensitivity and specificity of P. vivax–specific LAMP compared with microscopy were found to be 100% and 85%, respectively. Furthermore, detection limit for LAMP was found to be 0.8 copies/µL and it was also able to detect three complicated cases of P. vivax which were missed by microscopy. This study showed a LAMP assay to be a rapid and very sensitive method for the early diagnosis of both complicated and uncomplicated P. vivax malaria.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Infectious Diseases