eISSN: 1896-9151
ISSN: 1734-1922
Archives of Medical Science
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vol. 13
Systematic review/Meta-analysis

Performance of pfHRP2 versus pLDH antigen rapid diagnostic tests for the detection of Plasmodium falciparum: a systematic review and meta-analysis

Bo Li
Zhiqiang Sun
Xiaohan Li
Xiaoxi Li
Han Wang
Weijiao Chen
Peng Chen
Mengran Qiao
Yuanli Mao

Arch Med Sci 2017; 13, 3: 541–549
Online publish date: 2017/04/20
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Introduction: There have been many inconsistent reports about the performance of histidine-rich protein 2 (HRP2) and lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) antigens as rapid diagnostic tests (RDTs) for the diagnosis of past Plasmodium falciparum infections. This meta-analysis was performed to determine the performance of pfHRP2 versus pLDH antigen RDTs in the detection of P. falciparum.

Material and methods: After a systematic review of related studies, Meta-DiSc 1.4 software was used to calculate the pooled sensitivity, specificity, positive likelihood ratio (PLR), negative likelihood ratio (NLR), and diagnostic odds ratio (DOR). Forest plots and summary receiver operating characteristic curve (SROC) analysis were used to summarize the overall test performance.

Results: Fourteen studies which met the inclusion criteria were included in the meta-analysis. The summary performances for pfHRP2- and pLDH-based tests in the diagnosis of P. falciparum infections were as follows: pooled sensitivity, 96.3% (95.8–96.7%) vs. 82.6% (81.7–83.5%); specificity, 86.1% (85.3–86.8%) vs. 95.9% (95.4–96.3%); diagnostic odds ratio (DOR), 243.31 (97.679–606.08) vs. 230.59 (114.98–462.42); and area under ROCs, 0.9822 versus 0.9849 (all p < 0.001).

Conclusions: The two RDTs performed satisfactorily for the diagnosis of P. falciparum, but the pLDH tests had higher specificity, whereas the pfHRP2 tests had better sensitivity. The pfHRP2 tests had slightly greater accuracy compared to the pLDH tests. A combination of both antigens might be a more reliable approach for the diagnosis of malaria.

histidine-rich protein 2, lactate dehydrogenase, rapid diagnostic tests, Plasmodium falciparum

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