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Otol Neurotol. 2013 Feb;34(2):214-9. doi: 10.1097/MAO.0b013e31827d0b8b.

A systematic review and meta-analysis of the diagnostic accuracy of anti-heat shock protein 70 antibodies for the detection of autoimmune hearing loss.

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  • 1Institute of Hygiene, Universit√† Cattolica del Sacro Cuore, Largo F. Vito 1, Rome, Italy.



We reviewed case-control studies concerning the diagnostic accuracy of Heat Shock Protein 70 (Hsp-70) auto antibodies in the detection of immunomediated inner ear disease.


We searched for relevant articles published in English language on PubMed and Scopus up to December 2011. A quality assessment of the retrieved articles was performed using the Quality Assessment of Diagnostic Accuracy Studies (QUADAS) 2 tool. Pooled data on the accuracy of the test were calculated, where possible.


Three articles were deemed eligible. Among them, 2 evaluated the relationship between Hsp-70 and immunomediated inner ear disease by using the Western blot, whereas one report used the enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay method. Pooled sensitivity of Western blot test for Hsp-70 was 0.70 (95% confidence interval [CI], 0.59-0.80), with a large heterogeneity (I = 72.7%), and pooled specificity was 0.98 (95% CI, 0.87-1.00), with an I of 61.0%. Pooled positive likelihood ratios (LR) was 14.7 (95% CI, 2.1-104.1; I = 31.4%), and pooled negative LR was 0.32 (95% CI, 0.10-0.70; I = 78.8%). Sensitivity and specificity of enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay test for Hsp-70 auto antibodies was 0.85 (95% CI, 0.55-0.98) and 0.98 (95% CI, 0.86-1.00). Risk of bias was performed by using QUADAS 2 tool, with high scores obtained for patient selection and index test domains and low for the applicability criterion.


This review shows that studies on autoimmune hearing loss diagnosis based on the detection of Hsp-70 autoantibodies used different inclusion and methodologic criteria and are affected from potential bias. Additional studies are actually required to identify an accurate laboratory diagnostic method for the autoimmune hearing loss.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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