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J Med Microbiol. 2012 Feb;61(Pt 2):213-7. doi: 10.1099/jmm.0.035014-0. Epub 2011 Sep 15.

Immunochromatic kits Xpect Legionella and BinaxNOW Legionella for detection of Legionella pneumophila urinary antigen have low sensitivities for the diagnosis of Legionnaires' disease.

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Unit of Atypical Pneumonia, Department of Microbiological Surveillance and Research (AMOF), Statens Serum Institut, Ørestads Boulevard 5, DK 2300 Copenhagen S, Denmark.


Urinary antigen tests are the most widely used methods for diagnosing Legionnaires' disease (LD). However, all available urinary antigen tests have the disadvantage that they have low or no sensitivity for serogroups (sgs) other than Legionella pneumophila sg 1. Recently, Oxoid introduced the Xpect Legionella test for detection of L. pneumophila sg 1 and sg 6. In this study, we have evaluated the Xpect kit together with the BinaxNOW kit and compared them with the BinaxEIA kit. One hundred and fifteen urine samples from 91 patients with laboratory-confirmed LD were examined. Ninety-three samples were from 69 culture-proven cases of which 27 samples were from 23 non-sg 1 cases. At the patient level, the overall sensitivities for the three Legionella urinary antigen kits were 79 % for the BinaxEIA, 47 % for the BinaxNOW and 32 % for the Xpect kit. None of the urine samples from the 10 L. pneumophila sg 6 cases were positive by the Xpect kit whereas samples from four of the patients were positive by the BinaxEIA. Overall, the sensitivities for both immunochromatic assays were poor and they should not be used as the sole method for the diagnosis of LD.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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