Anjaly S. Nair joined as a Tutor in the Department of Biostatistics at Amrita School of Medicine in July 2017. She completed her MSc Biostatistics and BSc Mathematics from Mahatma Gandhi University, Kottayam. She has 4 years of teaching and research experience in the area of statistics in medical research. She had worked as a trainee – SAS programming in Webdrills Corporate Academy, Bangalore from October 2016 - July 2017 and trainee in the department of biostatistics at Christian Medical College Vellore from July 2016 – October 2016. She had done her post-graduate research projects at Christian Medical College, Vellore, in the topic of 'Factor Analysis' under the Department of Biostatistics.
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Ayswarya Kannan, Dr. Lalitha Biswas, Anil Kumar, Jessy Kurian, Anjaly S. Nair, Parasmal Suresh, Shine Sadasivan, and Dr. Raja Biswas, “Improving Diagnosis of Hepatitis C Virus Infection Using Hepatitis C Core Antigen Testing in a Resource-Poor Setting.”, Rev Soc Bras Med Trop, vol. 54, p. e02532020, 2021.[Abstract]
INTRODUCTION: We compared the hepatitis C virus (HCV) core antigen test with the HCV RNA assay to confirm anti-HCV results to determine whether the HCV core antigen test could be used as an alternative confirmatory test to the HCV RNA test.
METHODS: Sera from 156 patients were analyzed for anti-HCV and HCV core antigen using a chemiluminescent microparticle immunoassay (Architect i2000SR) and for HCV RNA using the artus HCV RG RT-PCR Kit (QIAGEN) in a Rotor-Gene Q instrument.
RESULTS: The diagnostic sensitivity, specificity, and positive and negative predictive values of the HCV core antigen assay compared to the HCV RNA test were 77.35%, 100%, 100%, and 89.38%, respectively. HCV core antigen levels showed a good correlation with those from HCV RNA quantification (r =0.872). However, 13 samples with a viral load of less than 4000 IU/mL were negative in the HCV core antigen assay. All gray-zone reactive samples were also RNA positive and were positive on repeat testing.
CONCLUSIONS: The Architect HCV core antigen assay is highly specific and has an excellent positive predictive value. At the present level of sensitivity (77%), the study is still relevant in a low-income setting in which most of the HCV-positive patients would go undiagnosed, since HCV RNA testing is not available and/or not affordable. HCV core antigen testing can also help determine the true burden of infection in a population, considering the fact that almost 50% of the anti-HCV positive cases are negative for HCV RNA.More »»