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Clin Diagn Lab Immunol. 2003 Jul;10(4):612-5.

Comparison of a dipstick assay for detection of Brucella-specific immunoglobulin M antibodies with other tests for serodiagnosis of human brucellosis.

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Microbiology Unit, HCU Virgen de la Victoria, Málaga, Spain.


A dipstick assay for the detection of Brucella-specific immunoglobulin M (IgM) antibodies was evaluated by studying the serological response of 133 cultures and or serologically confirmed patients with brucellosis in its different stages along with those of 34 healthy controls. As regards patients with illness less than 3 months in duration, 93.1% tested positive by the dipstick assay, a percentage similar to that obtained in the standard serum agglutination test (SAT) (92.0%), somewhat lower than that obtained by culture (100%) and higher than that obtained by IgM enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) (80.5%). SAT was the most sensitive test (87.0%) for patients with illness more than 3 months in duration, followed by culture (50%), the dipstick assay (28.3%), and IgM ELISA (7.5%). The results demonstrate that the dipstick assay could well be used in the serodiagnosis of patients with acute brucellosis, as well as to identify patients with a long history of the illness. Under laboratory conditions this test has the advantage of being quick and IgM antibody-specific.

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