Interferon γ assays in the diagnosis of tuberculosis infection in psoriasis patients who are candidates for biologic therapies

  • Domínguez J
  • Vilavella M
  • Latorre I
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Although there is no doubt that biologic agents are an effective alternative for the treatment of moderate and severe psoriasis, anti-tumor necrosis factor α therapy has been associated with reactivation of latent tuberculosis infection. Tuberculin skin testing (TST) is used to diagnose tuberculosis infection but it has low specificity in patients who have received the Mycobacterium bovis BCG vaccine and low sensitivity in patients with altered cell-mediated immunity. In vitro assays based on the detection of interferon γ released by T cells stimulated by specific Mycobacterium tuberculosis antigens have emerged as an option for the diagnosis of tuberculosis infection. The results to date show that they are a viable alternative to TST thanks to their higher specificity and sensitivity. Furthermore, these assays are also proving to have high negative predictive value, meaning that we might be able to use them without TST in the short to medium term. © 2011 Elsevier España, S.L. and AEDV. All rights reserved.

Author-supplied keywords

  • Anti-TNF-α treatment
  • In vitro IFN-γ assay
  • Psoriasis
  • Tuberculin
  • Tuberculosis

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  • J. Domínguez

  • M. Vilavella

  • I. Latorre

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