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Am J Trop Med Hyg. 2014 Oct;91(4):854-861. doi: 10.4269/ajtmh.14-0194. Epub 2014 Jul 28.

Comparison of quantitative and qualitative tests for glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase deficiency.


A barrier to eliminating Plasmodium vivax malaria is inadequate treatment of infected patients. 8-Aminoquinoline-based drugs clear the parasite; however, people with glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase (G6PD) deficiency are at risk for hemolysis from these drugs. Understanding the performance of G6PD deficiency tests is critical for patient safety. Two quantitative assays and two qualitative tests were evaluated. The comparison of quantitative assays gave a Pearson correlation coefficient of 0.7585 with significant difference in mean G6PD activity, highlighting the need to adhere to a single reference assay. Both qualitative tests had high sensitivity and negative predictive value at a cutoff G6PD value of 40% of normal activity if interpreted conservatively and performed under laboratory conditions. The performance of both tests dropped at a cutoff level of 45%. Cytochemical staining of specimens confirmed that heterozygous females with > 50% G6PD-deficient cells can seem normal by phenotypic tests.

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