Background: Acute gastroenteritis is the most common cause of illness and death in infants and young children worldwide. Rotaviruses (RVs) are the major viruses that cause acute gastroenteritis in young children, especially in developing countries in Asia and Africa.
Methods: The presence of rotavirus antigens in sera of four unvaccinated pediatric patients, aged between 4 and 6 years with severe diarrhea and dehydration, were detected by using three immunochromatographic (IC) kits. In addition, the presence of anti-rotavirus IgG, IgA, and IgM antibodies and their concentrations in patient sera were also determined by enzyme immunoassay (EIA).
Results: All three kits could detect rotavirus antigen in patient sera with different intensity of the test lines. When patient sera were pretreated with anti-VP6 rotavirus mouse monoclonal antibody prior to testing, the rotavirus positive test lines disappeared, suggesting that all patient sera contained VP6 protein antigen of rotavirus. Assessment of antibody concentration in these patient sera revealed that all patient sera contained IgG, IgA, and IgM antibodies against rotavirus antigen at different concentrations.
Conclusions: The sensitivity of rotavirus protein detection in the patient sera of one IC kit brand was comparable to those of the EIA, suggesting this IC kit could be an alternative screening method for rapid diagnosis of rotavirus infection.