Evaluation of laboratory tests for dengue diagnosis in clinical specimens from consecutive patients with suspected dengue in Belo Horizonte, Brazil

Fernanda Oliveira Ferraz, Maria Rosa Quaresma Bomfim, Ant Ônio Helvécio Totola, Thiago Vinícius Ávila, Daniel Cisalpino, José Eduardo Marques Pessanha, Danielle da Glória de Souza, Ant Ônio Lúcio Teixeira Júnior, Maurício Lacerda Nogueira, Oscar Bruna-Romero, Mauro Martins Teixeira

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations


Background: Dengue is a widely spread arboviral disease in tropical and subtropical regions of the world. Dengue fever presents clinical characteristics similar to other febrile illness. Thus laboratory diagnosis is important for adequate management of the disease. Objectives: The present study was designed to evaluate the diagnostic performance of real-time PCR and serological methods for dengue in a real epidemic context. Study design: Clinical data and blood samples were collected from consecutive patients with suspected dengue who attended a primary health care unit in Belo Horizonte, Brazil. Serologic methods and real-time PCR were performed in serum samples to confirm dengue diagnosis. Results: Among the 181 consecutive patients enrolled in this study with suspected dengue, 146 were considered positive by serological criteria (positive NS1 ELISA and/or anti-dengue IgM ELISA) and 138 were positive by real-time PCR. Clinical criteria were not sufficient for distinguishing between dengue and non-dengue febrile illness. The PCR reaction was pre-optimized using samples from patients with known viral infection. It had similar sensitivity compared to NS1 ELISA (88% and 89%, respectively). We also evaluated three commercial lateral flow immunochromatographic tests for NS1 detection (BIOEASY, BIORAD and PANBIO). All three tests showed high sensitivity (94%, 91% and 81%, respectively) for dengue diagnosis. Conclusion: According to our results it can be suggested that lateral flow tests for NS1 detection are the most feasible methods for early diagnosis of dengue.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)41-46
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Clinical Virology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Sep 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • Anti-dengue IgM
  • Dengue diagnosis
  • Lateral flow immunochromatographic assays
  • NS1
  • Real-time PCR

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Virology
  • Infectious Diseases


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