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J Clin Microbiol. Sep 1992; 30(9): 2415–2418.
PMCID: PMC265515

Detection of lipoarabinomannan as a diagnostic test for tuberculosis.


A coagglutination technique was established for the detection of lipoarabinomannan of Mycobacterium tuberculosis in human serum samples and evaluated for its utility in the diagnosis of tuberculosis at the Instituto Nacional de Enfermedades Respiratorias in Mexico City. The test had a sensitivity of 88% in patients with sputum-smear-positive active pulmonary tuberculosis. The sensitivity in patients with active pulmonary tuberculosis negative for acid-fast bacilli in sputum was 67%. Less favorable results were obtained for patients with AIDS and tuberculosis, with a sensitivity of 57%. The specificity in control patients with lung diseases different from tuberculosis and in healthy subjects was 100%. The positive predictive value was 100%, and the negative predictive value for patients with sputum-positive active pulmonary tuberculosis was 97%. The results of this study suggest that the detection of lipoarabinomannan is an accurate test for the diagnosis of pulmonary tuberculosis.

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