Assessment of CD27 expression as a tool for active and latent tuberculosis diagnosis

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There are still no reliable tests to distinguish active tuberculosis (TB) from latent TB infection (LTBI). Assessment of CD27 modulation on CD4+ T-cells has been suggested as a tool to diagnose different TB stages. Objectives: To use several cytometric approaches to evaluate CD27 expression on Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb)-specific CD4+ T-cells to differentiate TB stages. Methods: 55 HIV-uninfected subjects were enrolled: 13 active TB; 12 cured TB; 30 LTBI. Whole blood was stimulated with RD1-proteins or Cytomegalovirus-lysate (CMV). Interferon (IFN)-γ response was evaluated by cytometry. The proportion of CD27-/+ within the IFN-γ+ CD4+ T-cells or RATIO of the CD27-median fluorescence intensity (MFI) of CD4+ T-cells over the CD27 MFI of IFN-γ+ CD4+ T-cells was evaluated. Results: The greatest diagnostic accuracy in discriminating active TB vs. LTBI or cured TB was reached by evaluating the CD27+ CD45RA- cells within the IFN-γ+ CD4+ T-cell subset (76.92 sensitivity for both, and 90% and 91.67% specificity, respectively), although the use of the CD27 MFI RATIO allows for stricter data analysis, independent of the operator. Conclusions: the study of CD27 expression using different approaches, whether it involves evaluation of CD45RA expression or not, is a robust biomarker for discriminating TB stages.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)526-533
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Infection
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Nov 1 2015


  • Biomarker
  • CD27
  • Diagnosis
  • LTBI
  • Tuberculosis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology (medical)
  • Infectious Diseases


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