Background: Interferon-gamma release assays (IGRAs) have high specificity and sensitivity for the diagnosis of tuberculosis (TB) infection. However, their role as a screening tool in children with immunodeficiency disorders is still unclear. In the present study, we performed a contact investigation using serial IGRAs on children with immunodeficiency conditions exposed to a contagious TB patient. Methods: Children who were exposed to a contagious TB case underwent serial QuantiFERON® TB Gold In-Tube (QFT-GIT) and T-SPOT ®.TB (T-SPOT) testing. Results: Eighteen children were tested. At the first testing, only two children (11 %) were positive to T-SPOT. Indeterminate results were more frequent with QFT-GIT (35 %) than with T-SPOT (12 %). In the multivariable analysis, a statistically significant association of lymphocyte count 3 (p <0.00005) and low age (p = 0.03) with indeterminate results for the QFT-GIT test but not for T-SPOT (p = 0.10 and p = 0.88, respectively) was found. At the end of October 2012, 15 of the 18 children were alive and none developed active TB disease. Conclusion: T-SPOT provided more determinate results and was less influenced by low age and lymphocytopenia than QFT-GIT in this population of immunodeficient children. These findings suggest that T-SPOT is a more accurate test for the identification of TB infection in young children with lymphocytopenia and should be preferred to QFT-GIT under such specific conditions.
- Interferon-gamma release assays
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Microbiology (medical)
- Infectious Diseases