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Open AccessArticle

Comparison of Diagnostic Tools for the Detection of Dirofilaria immitis Infection in Dogs

1
Department of Veterinary Medicine, University of Bari, 70010 Valenzano, Bari, Italy
2
IDEXX Laboratories, Inc., Westbrook, ME 04092, USA
3
Boehringer Ingelheim Animal Health, 69007 Lyon, France
4
Aggeu Magalhães Institute, Oswaldo Cruz Foundation, 50740-465 Recife, Brazil
5
Faculty of Veterinary Sciences, Bu-Ali Sina University, Hamedan 6516738695, Iran
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Pathogens 2020, 9(6), 499; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens9060499
Received: 28 May 2020 / Revised: 16 June 2020 / Accepted: 17 June 2020 / Published: 22 June 2020
In the last two decades, reports of canine heartworm (HW) infection have increased even in non-endemic areas, with a large variability in prevalence data due to the diagnostic strategy employed. This study evaluated the relative performance of two microtiter plate ELISA methods for the detection of HW antigen in determining the occurrence of Dirofilaria immitis in a dog population previously tested by the modified Knott’s test and SNAP 4Dx Plus test. The prevalence of this infection in the sheltered dog population (n = 363) from a high-risk area for HW infection was 44.4% according to the modified Knott’s test and 58.1% according to a point-of-care antigen ELISA. All serum samples were then evaluated by a microtiter plate ELISA test performed with and without immune complex dissociation (ICD). The prevalence increased from 56.5% to 79.6% following ICD, indicating a high proportion of samples with immune complexing. Comparing these results to that of the modified Knott’s test, the samples negative for microfilariae (mfs) and those positive only for D. repens mfs demonstrated the greatest increase in the proportion of positive results for D. immitis by ELISA following ICD. While the ICD method is not recommended for routine screening, it may be a valuable secondary strategy for identifying HW infections in dogs. View Full-Text
Keywords: Dirofilaria immitis; modified Knott’s test; ELISA; immune complex dissociation; serological assays Dirofilaria immitis; modified Knott’s test; ELISA; immune complex dissociation; serological assays
MDPI and ACS Style

Panarese, R.; Iatta, R.; Mendoza-Roldan, J.A.; Szlosek, D.; Braff, J.; Liu, J.; Beugnet, F.; Dantas-Torres, F.; Beall, M.J.; Otranto, D. Comparison of Diagnostic Tools for the Detection of Dirofilaria immitis Infection in Dogs. Pathogens 2020, 9, 499.

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