Histoplasmosis is an emerging fungal disease, with global distribution. The disseminated form of the disease is a more severe infection, generally associated with AIDS. Classic diagnostic methods for histoplasmosis consist of microscopy, culture, and histopathology. More recently, the importance of Histoplasma
antigen detection has dominated the literature on histoplasmosis diagnosis, but the relevance of molecular assays has not been as much studied. Here we describe the results of a systematic literature review focusing on studies that mainly compared immunological techniques (Histoplasma
urine antigen detection) with molecular tests for the diagnosis of histoplasmosis. In addition to the review of comparative studies using such diagnostic techniques, the literature on polymerase chain reaction (PCR) tests in patients with disseminated histoplasmosis is also summarized. Two studies reported the comparison between immunological and molecular methods applied simultaneously for the diagnosis of disseminated histoplasmosis. PCR demonstrates a satisfactory performance assisting in the detection of Histoplasma
spp. DNA in clinical samples.
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