Serological diagnosis of infectious mononucleosis by chemiluminescent immunoassay using capsid antigen p18 of Epstein-Barr virus

Clin Chim Acta. 2005 Apr;354(1-2):77-82. doi: 10.1016/j.cccn.2004.11.010. Epub 2004 Dec 30.


Background: Infectious mononucleosis is the common clinical manifestation of primary Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) infection in young children. We evaluated a chemiluminescent immunoassay method for the determination of serum anti-viral capsid antigen IgM antibody and its clinical value in the diagnosis of infectious mononucleosis.

Methods: Concentrations of the antibody in serum samples from 187 children measured by chemiluminescent immunoassay were compared with those measured by ELISA.

Results: Assessment of technologic quality (methodology) in diagnostic tests demonstrated that sensitivity of CLIA was 0.64 U/ml and the functional sensitivity was <0.9 U/ml. The within-assay and the between-assay imprecisions of different concentrations were all <5%. Recoveries were all in 93-107%. The linear regression equation between expected values and measured values was y=0.0967+1.0093x, correlation coefficient was 0.9996 (p<0.0001). The ROC curve showed that the sensitivity and specificity of the CLIA both were >90%. The area under the curve was 0.992, which was significantly higher than that of ELISA (p<0.05).

Conclusion: The CLIA was the excellent method for EBV-VCA IgM measurement at present and can improve the clinical diagnosis of infectious mononucleosis.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Evaluation Study

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Antibodies, Viral / blood
  • Antigens, Viral / immunology
  • Capsid / immunology*
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay / methods
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Immunoenzyme Techniques / methods*
  • Immunoglobulin M / blood*
  • Infectious Mononucleosis / blood
  • Infectious Mononucleosis / diagnosis*
  • Infectious Mononucleosis / immunology
  • Linear Models
  • Luminescent Measurements / methods*
  • Male
  • ROC Curve
  • Regression Analysis
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Sensitivity and Specificity
  • Serologic Tests / methods


  • Antibodies, Viral
  • Antigens, Viral
  • Immunoglobulin M