Detection of mutant P2 adenosine transporter (TbAT1) gene in Trypanosoma brucei gambiense isolates from northwest Uganda using allele-specific polymerase chain reaction
Lubega, George W.
Enyaru, John C. K
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objective To assess the application of allele-specific PCR (AS-PCR) as a fast, cheap and reliable method for detecting mutant TbAT1 associated with melarsoprol relapse in Trypanosoma brucei gambiense isolates from northwest Uganda. methods A total of 105 trypanosome isolates were analysed using SfaN1 restriction fragment length polymorphism (RFLP) and AS-PCR, the former used as the gold standard. Sensitivity, specificity, positive and negative predictive values of AS-PCR as well as agreement between the tests were determined. results Eleven trypanosome isolates had mutant TbAT1 while 94 exhibited the wild-type TbAT1 genes. There was a highly significant agreement between SfaN1 RFLP and AS-PCR with kappa and intra-class correlation values of 1.0. The sensitivity and specificity of AS-PCR were both 100%, while the positive and negative predictive values were found to be equal to 1.0. Cost and time analyses were performed and AS-PCR was 4.3 times cheaper than SfaN1 RFLP, in addition to the less time required for its execution. conclusion AS-PCR should be the test of choice for screening for mutant TbAT1 in the ever-increasing numbers of field trypanosome isolates.