Meningococcal Disease Diagnostic Performance Published in The Lancet Infectious Diseases

Mar 052015
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A study using the meningococcal disease diagnostic developed at the laboratories in the Royal Victoria Hospital, Belfast, has recently been published in The Lancet Infectious Diseases.

The loop-mediated isothermal amplification (LAMP) molecular test was used near-patient in the emergency department at the Royal Belfast Hospital for Sick Children, alongside the usual investigations for meningococcal disease in 148 children.

A photomicrograph of Neisseria meningitidis; Magnified 1125X.

A photomicrograph of Neisseria meningitidis; Magnified 1125X. Via CDC Public Health Image Library.

The median time from sample to result was 1 hour 26 minutes and the near-patient LAMP assays provided impressive results compared with the gold-standard laboratory methods: a sensitivity of 89% and negative predictive value of 98% when tested on respiratory and blood specimens, with 100% specificity and 100% positive predictive value, when tested in real-world near-patient settings.

The paper concludes that the meningococcal LAMP assay is straightforward enough to use in any hospital with basic laboratory facilities and provides diagnostically accurate and clinically useful results.

Belfast Health and Social Care Trust previously licensed the LAMP meningococcal disease diagnostic to HiberGene Diagnostics Ltd.

The paper:
Diagnostic accuracy of loop-mediated isothermal amplification as a near-patient test for meningococcal disease in children: an observational cohort study
Thomas W Bourke, MD, James P McKenna, PhD, Prof Peter V Coyle, MD, Prof Michael D Shields, MD, Derek J Fairley, PhD
Lancet Infectious Diseases
Published Online: 26 February 2015
The paper: