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Free Content Tuberculosis diagnosis after bleach processing for early stage tuberculosis laboratory capacity building [Short communication]

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The diagnosis of tuberculosis is seriously hampered in the absence of standard biosafety laboratory facilities for specimen concentration and Mycobacterium tuberculosis culture. Within a laboratory twinning arrangement, heat-fixed direct smear and sediment from 74 bleach-processed and 20 non-processed specimens from Cumura Hospital, Guinea-Bissau, were sent to Lisbon for molecular evaluation of rifampicin resistance. Sequence analysis of a 369 base-pair rpoB locus detected 3.2% (3/94) resistant specimens. To our knowledge, this represents the first report on the molecular analysis of M. tuberculosis from bleach-processed sputum, an alternative to current diagnostic practice in low-resource settings.

Keywords: Mycobacterium tuberculosis; denaturing high-performance liquid chromatography (DHPLC) sequencing; rpoB; sodium hypochlorite; sputum smear microscopy

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: Instituto Nacional de Saúde Dr. Ricardo Jorge (INSA, IP), Lisbon, Portugal 2: Cumura Hospital, Cumura, Republic of Guinea-Bissau 3: Serviço de Patologia Clínica, Hospital Fernando Fonseca, Amadora, Portugal 4: Escola de Ciências e Tecnologia, Instituto de Ciências Agrárias e Ambientais Mediterrânicas, Universidade de Évora, Évora, Portugal 5: Faculty of Pharmaceutical Science, Universidade Estadual Paulista, Araraquara, São Paulo, Brazil 6: Instituto Nacional de Pesquisas da Amazônia, Manaus, Brazil 7: Instituto de Higiene e Medicina Tropical (IHMT), Universidade Nova de Lisboa, Lisbon, Portugal

Publication date: November 1, 2012

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  • The International Journal of Tuberculosis and Lung Disease publishes articles on all aspects of lung health, including public health-related issues such as training programmes, cost-benefit analysis, legislation, epidemiology, intervention studies and health systems research. The IJTLD is dedicated to the continuing education of physicians and health personnel and the dissemination of information on tuberculosis and lung health world-wide.

    Certain IJTLD articles are selected for translation into French, Spanish, Chinese or Russian. They are available on the Union website

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