Comparison of different PCR protocols for the detection and diagnosis of Plasmodium falciparum
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An assessment of differing PCR protocols for the diagnosis of Plasmodium falciparum infection was performed on samples from an area of holoendemic malaria transmission in western Burkina Faso. The PCR protocols had generally high sensitivities (>92%) and specificities (>69%), but the negative predictive values (NPV) were moderate and differed widely among the PCR protocols tested. These PCR protocols that amplified either the P. falciparum pfcrt gene or the small subunit ribosomal DNA were the most reliable diagnostic tools. However, the moderate NPV imply that more than one PCR protocol should be used for diagnosis in holoendemic areas.