Cells 2012, 1(2), 89-99; doi:10.3390/cells1020089
Review

Distinguishing Latent from Active Mycobacterium tuberculosis Infection Using Elispot Assays: Looking Beyond Interferon-gamma

1 Department of Medicine, Surgery, and Dentistry, Clinic of Infectious Diseases and Tropical Medicine, San Paolo Hospital, University of Milan, 20142 Milan, Italy 2 EMD Millipore Corporation, 17 Cherry Hill Drive, Danvers, MA 01923, USA 3 Department of Microbiology and Flow Cytometry Core Facility, Boston University School of Medicine, Boston, MA 02118, USA
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 14 March 2012; in revised form: 11 April 2012 / Accepted: 17 April 2012 / Published: 7 May 2012
(This article belongs to the Special Issue ELISPOT Research)
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Abstract: Mycobacterium tuberculosis (MTB) is a global heath epidemic, its threat amplified by HIV infection and the emergence of multidrug-resistant tuberculosis (MDR-TB). Interferon (IFN)-gamma release assays (IGRAs) have improved the accuracy of detection of MTB exposure in some subject groups as compared to the Tuberculin Skin Test (TST). However, as IFN-gamma is produced by both fully rested and more recently activated populations of memory T cells, it is not surprising that the measurement of this cytokine alone cannot accurately distinguish Latent TB Infected (LTBI) subjects from those with active (infectious) disease. Accurate and rapid diagnosis of infectious individuals would allow medication to be properly allocated and other actions taken to more effectively curtail MTB spread. Analysis of multi-cytokine profiles ex vivo after stimulation of PBMCs from LTBI and active MTB subjects indicate the real possibility of successfully discerning these two disease states within 24 hours of a subject’s blood draw. Due to the unparalleled sensitivity, low cost, and ease of use of Elispot assays, we propose that via a multiplex Elispot platform the accurate distinction of LTBI from active MTB-infected individuals is within reach.
Keywords: mycobacterium tuberculosis; Elispot; polyfunctional T cell; IFN-gamma; LTBI; active MTB

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MDPI and ACS Style

Tincati, C.; Cappione III, A.J.; Snyder-Cappione, J.E. Distinguishing Latent from Active Mycobacterium tuberculosis Infection Using Elispot Assays: Looking Beyond Interferon-gamma. Cells 2012, 1, 89-99.

AMA Style

Tincati C, Cappione III AJ, Snyder-Cappione JE. Distinguishing Latent from Active Mycobacterium tuberculosis Infection Using Elispot Assays: Looking Beyond Interferon-gamma. Cells. 2012; 1(2):89-99.

Chicago/Turabian Style

Tincati, Camilla; Cappione III, Amedeo J.; Snyder-Cappione, Jennifer E. 2012. "Distinguishing Latent from Active Mycobacterium tuberculosis Infection Using Elispot Assays: Looking Beyond Interferon-gamma." Cells 1, no. 2: 89-99.

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