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Objective: The aim of this study was to compare the gold-standard fluorescent microscopy as a diagnostic technique with the PCR test, an advance molecular technique.
Methodology: A total of 200 suspected pulmonary and extra-pulmonary samples were taken and stored for analysis in Quetta city. Samples were tested for Mycobacterium tuberculosis and Mycobacterium bovis by both the gold standard fluorescent microscopy (auramine-O FM) and molecular technique duplex PCR. By duplex PCR, Mycobacterium tuberculosis’s 245bp sequence and Mycobacterium bovis’s 500bp sequence was detected by using specific primers.
Results: Among 200 pulmonary and extra-pulmonary samples, fluorescent microscopy detected 31 positive cases, while PCR detected 60 and 2 positive cases for Mycobacterium tuberculosis and Mycobacterium bovis respectively. The PCR analysis showed 28% of male patients and 32% female patients as positive for M. tuberculosis. Moreover, about52/164 pulmonary samples and 8/36 Extra-pulmonary samples were detected to be positive by PCR analysis.
Conclusion: The PCR results were more accurate, rapid, sensitive and specie specific for detection of tuberculosis showing 60 positive cases for Mycobacterium tuberculosis and 2 positives for Mycobacterium bovis with a significant p-value. On the other hand, FM detected Mycobacterium tuberculosis with comparatively lower sensitivity with only 31 positive cases and had failed to distinguish between species.
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