Performance evaluation of the Aptima® HCV Quant Dx assay for hepatitis C virus (HCV) RNA detection and quantification in comparison to the Abbott RealTime HCV assay

Anna Rosa Garbuglia, Angela Bibbò, Roberta Sciamanna, Marina Pisciotta, Maria Rosaria Capobianchi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background The Aptima HCV Quant Dx assay (Aptima) is a real-time transcription-mediated amplification assay CE-approved for the diagnosis and monitoring of hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection. Objective Aptima's analytical performance was compared to the Abbott RealTime HCV assay (RealTime) in a clinical routine setting. Study design Overall 295 clinical plasma samples (117 prospective/fresh; 178 retrospective/frozen) from HCV-infected patients were tested in Aptima and RealTime to determine concordance on qualitative and quantitative results. Linearity and precision at low viral loads (VLs; 0.8–3.3 Log IU/mL) was tested using dilutions of the 5th WHO standard, in 10 and 20 replicates in the two assays, respectively. The ability to measure different HCV genotypes and accuracy were analyzed using the Seracare EQA panel. Results Inter-assay agreement for qualitative results (prospective samples) was 88% (kappa = 0.78). For the 127 samples with quantitative results in both assays, Aptima yielded on average slightly higher values (by 0.24 Log IU/mL; Bland–Altman method) than RealTime. Concordance between assay results was excellent (R = 0.98). At low VLs (0.8–3.3 Log IU/mL), Aptima demonstrated good linearity and precision, similar to RealTime. Aptima detected and accurately quantified all main HCV genotypes. Conclusions Aptima demonstrated excellent precision, linearity, and accuracy in all genotypes tested. Good concordance was observed between Aptima and RealTime assays in clinical samples. The performance of the Aptima assay, on the fully automated Panther platform, makes it an excellent candidate for the detection and monitoring of HCV RNA in plasma and serum samples.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-6
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Clinical Virology
Publication statusPublished - Jul 1 2017


  • Accuracy
  • Genotype
  • HCV
  • Linearity
  • Precision
  • Real-time amplification assay
  • Viral load

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Virology
  • Infectious Diseases

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