Use of polymerase chain reaction assays of aqueous humor in the differential diagnosis of retinitis in patients infected with human immunodeficiency virus

Anna Danisc, Paola Cinque, Sandro Vergani, Melchiorre Candino, Sara Racca, Anna De Bona, Roberto Novati, Antonella Castagna, Adriano Lazzarin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

We performed polymerase chain reaction (PCR) for detection of cytomegalovirus (CMV), varicella-zoster virus (VZV), herpes simplex virus (HSV), and Toxoplasma gondii DNA in aqueous humor from 15 patients who were infected with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and who had retinitis of unclear origin; these patients were selected from among 820 patients evaluated by ophthalmoscopic examination. On the basis of the final response to treatment, CMV, VZV, and T. gondii retinitis was diagnosed in 5, 2, and 4 of the 15 patients, respectively. No final etiologic diagnosis was reached for four patients. All S patients with CMV retinitis were CMV DNA- positive, 1 of 2 patients with VZV retinopathy were VZV DNA-positive, and 3 of 4 patients with T. gondii retinitis were T. gondii DNA-positive. All PeR assays of aqueous humor from the four patients without infectious retinitis were negative. PCR assay of aqueous humor is helpful in the etiologic diagnosis of retinitis of unclear origin in HIV-infected patients.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1100-1106
Number of pages7
JournalClinical Infectious Diseases
Volume24
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 1997

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology

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