Serodiagnostic efficacy of Mycobacterium tuberculosis 30/32-kDa mycolyl transferase complex, ESAT-6, and CFP-10 in patients with active tuberculosis

Arch Immunol Ther Exp (Warsz). 2010 Feb;58(1):57-65. doi: 10.1007/s00005-009-0055-4. Epub 2010 Jan 5.


Elimination of tuberculosis (TB) largely depends upon definitive rapid diagnosis and treatment. Widely used diagnostic tests do not qualify for use in a developing country due to lack of either desired accuracy or their cost. In the present study an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay was used to evaluate the diagnostic potential of an immuno-dominant 30/32-kDa mycolyl transferase complex (Ag85 complex) and Mycobacterium tuberculosis-specific proteins (ESAT-6 and CFP-10) of the RD1 region. Higher sensitivity (84.1%) with Ag85 complex was observed compared with ESAT-6 (64.9%) and CFP-10 (66%), with almost similar specificity (Ag85: 85.2%, ESAT-6: 88.9%, CFP-10: 85.2%), whereas the individual components of Ag85 complex, i.e. Ag85A, Ag85B, and Ag85C, showed sensitivities of 44.6, 34, and 80.9% and specificities of 55.6, 74.1, and 40.7% respectively. A cocktail of Ag85 complex, ESAT-6, CFP-10, Ag85A, Ag85B, and Ag85C antigens also could not help in increasing either sensitivity (51.1%) or specificity (85.2%). Furthermore, immunoblot analysis using clinical isolates as well as a standard strain (H37Rv) of M. tuberculosis also showed strong reactivity of sera from TB patients to Ag85 complex and, to a lesser extent, also to ESAT-6. To conclude, use of Ag85 complex along with ESAT-6 and CFP-10 seems to be promising in minimizing the heterogeneous sero-responses of adult TB cases.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Acyltransferases / analysis*
  • Acyltransferases / immunology
  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Antigens, Bacterial / analysis*
  • Antigens, Bacterial / immunology
  • Bacterial Proteins / analysis*
  • Bacterial Proteins / immunology
  • Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay
  • Feasibility Studies
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Mycobacterium tuberculosis / immunology*
  • Mycobacterium tuberculosis / metabolism
  • Mycobacterium tuberculosis / pathogenicity
  • Sensitivity and Specificity
  • Tuberculosis / diagnosis*


  • Antigens, Bacterial
  • Bacterial Proteins
  • CFP-10 protein, Mycobacterium tuberculosis
  • ESAT-6 protein, Mycobacterium tuberculosis
  • Acyltransferases
  • antigen 85B, Mycobacterium tuberculosis