Detection of phase I IgG antibodies to Coxiella burnetii with EIA as a screening test for blood donations

Eur J Clin Microbiol Infect Dis. 2012 Nov;31(11):3207-9. doi: 10.1007/s10096-012-1686-7. Epub 2012 Jul 10.


The presence of a high phase I IgG antibody titre may indicate chronic infection and a risk for the transmission of Coxiella burnetii through blood transfusion. The outbreak of Q fever in the Netherlands allowed for the comparison of an enzyme immunoassay (EIA) with the reference immunofluorescence assay (IFA) in a large group of individuals one year after acute Q fever. EIA is 100 % sensitive in detecting high (≥1:1,024) phase I IgG antibody titres. The cost of screening with EIA and confirming all EIA-positive results with IFA is much lower than screening all donations with IFA. This should be taken into account in cost-effectiveness analyses of screening programmes.

Publication types

  • Evaluation Study

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Antibodies, Bacterial / blood*
  • Blood Donors*
  • Child
  • Coxiella burnetii / immunology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Immunoenzyme Techniques / methods*
  • Immunoglobulin G / blood*
  • Male
  • Mass Screening / methods*
  • Middle Aged
  • Netherlands
  • Q Fever / diagnosis*
  • Sensitivity and Specificity
  • Young Adult


  • Antibodies, Bacterial
  • Immunoglobulin G