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Interferon-γ release assays for the diagnosis of tuberculosis in children
  1. Marc Tebruegge1–3,
  2. Tom G Connell3–5,
  3. Nicole Ritz3,6,
  4. Nigel Curtis3–5
  1. 1Academic Unit of Clinical & Experimental Sciences, University of Southampton, Southampton, UK
  2. 2Institute for Life Sciences, University of Southampton, Southampton, UK
  3. 3Department of Paediatrics, The University of Melbourne, Parkville, Australia
  4. 4Infectious Diseases Unit, Royal Children's Hospital Melbourne, Parkville, Australia
  5. 5Murdoch Children's Research Institute, Parkville, Australia
  6. 6Infectious Diseases Unit, University Children's Hospital Basel, Basel, Switzerland
  1. Correspondence to Dr Marc Tebruegge, Academic Unit of Clinical & Experimental Sciences, University of Southampton. Wellcome Trust Clinical Research Facility (Mailpoint 218), Southampton University Hospitals, Tremona Road, Southampton SO16 6YD, UK; m.tebruegge{at}

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We read with interest the recent publication by Méndez-Echevarría et al which compared the performance of tuberculin skin tests (TST) with a commercial interferon-γ release assay (IGRA), the QuantiFERON-TB Gold In-Tube assay, for the diagnosis of latent tuberculosis infection (LTBI) and active TB disease (TBD) in children.1 However, we believe several aspects require clarification for readers.

Consistent with previous studies evaluating TST and IGRA in children, a significant proportion (4.4%) of participants had indeterminate IGRA results and an even higher proportion (8.9%) had discordant results, which were predominately (38/41; 92.7%) TST+/IGRA−.2 Interestingly, almost all (67/68; 98.5%) children with TBD had concordantly positive …

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  • Funding None.

  • Competing interests None.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

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  • PostScript
    Ana Méndez-Echevarría Fernando Baquero-Artigao María José Mellado