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Vaccine. 2012 Jun 6;30(26):3891-6. doi: 10.1016/j.vaccine.2012.04.003. Epub 2012 Apr 16.

Evaluation of an improved rapid neutralizing antibody detection test (RAPINA) for qualitative and semiquantitative detection of rabies neutralizing antibody in humans and dogs.

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  • 1Department of Microbiology, Faculty of Medicine, Oita University, 1-1 Idaigaoka, Hasama-machi, Yufu City, Oita 879-5593, Japan.


Using the principle of immunochromatography, we previously developed a method called RAPINA (Rapid Neutralizing Antibody detection test) that can measure the level of rabies virus -neutralizing antibody (VNA) in serum samples [Shiota S, Mannen K, Matsumoto T, Yamada K, Yasui T, Takayama K, et al. Development and evaluation of a rapid neutralizing antibody test for rabies. J Virol Methods 2009;161:58-62]. RAPINA is faster, simpler, and easier to perform compared with a virus-neutralizing test or enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). The improved version of RAPINA has greater positive and negative predictive values corresponding to a VNA level of 0.5 IU/mL, as recommended by the World Health Organization and the World Organization for Animal Health. To verify the efficacy of this improved method, serum samples were collected from humans and dogs before and after immunization against rabies and were tested in Japan, Sri Lanka, and Thailand. The results were compared between RAPINA and the true VNA levels measured by the Rapid Fluorescent Focus Inhibition Test (RFFIT). The improved RAPINA accurately predicted seropositivity for 182 of 183 seropositive human samples as assessed by RFFIT (99.5%) and for 138 of 140 RFFIT-negative human samples (98.6%). In dog serum samples, the positive and negative predictive values were 99.7% (345/355) and 95.6% (174/182), respectively. RAPINA was also used to estimate VNA levels in a semiquantitative manner by using serial dilution of serum samples. Our results show that RAPINA is an easy and rapid method for measuring VNA levels before and after immunization with the rabies vaccine and does not need a high skill level or sophisticated equipment. RAPINA can be used to monitor the success of preexposure prophylaxis in at-risk persons, vaccine coverage, and animal control. It can also be used in laboratories with modest facilities and where a large number of samples are screened.

Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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