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Clin Vaccine Immunol. 2008 Sep;15(9):1316-21. doi: 10.1128/CVI.00150-08. Epub 2008 Jul 16.

Validation of a competitive enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay for detection of Babesia bigemina antibodies in cattle.

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Animal Disease Research Unit, Agricultural Research Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Pullman, Washington 99164-6630, USA.


A competitive enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (cELISA) based on a broadly conserved, species-specific, B-cell epitope within the C terminus of Babesia bigemina rhoptry-associated protein 1a was validated for international use. Receiver operating characteristic analysis revealed 16% inhibition as the threshold for a negative result, with an associated specificity of 98.3% and sensitivity of 94.7%. Increasing the threshold to 21% increased the specificity to 100% but modestly decreased the sensitivity to 87.2%. By using 21% inhibition, the positive predictive values ranged from 90.7% (10% prevalence) to 100% (95% prevalence) and the negative predictive values ranged from 97.0% (10% prevalence) to 48.2% (95% prevalence). The assay was able to detect serum antibody as early as 7 days after intravenous inoculation. The cELISA was distributed to five different laboratories along with a reference set of 100 defined bovine serum samples, including known positive, known negative, and field samples. The pairwise concordance among the five laboratories ranged from 100% to 97%, and all kappa values were above 0.8, indicating a high degree of reliability. Overall, the cELISA appears to have the attributes necessary for international application.

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