Role of NS1 Antigen in the Diagnosis of Dengue Viral Infection

Anila A Mathews, Appalaraju Boppe, Marina Thomas


Background: Dengue is widely distributed in subtropical and tropical areas of the world; it affects all agegroups and is classified as a major global health threat by the World Health Organization. Detection of dengue virus-specific antibodies is commonly used for routine diagnosis.

Methodology: 81 consecutive serum samples were tested for dengue NS1 antigen in addition to dengue IgM and IgG antibodies and the results were analyzed with other parameters.

Results: Out of 81 samples tested for both antigen and antibody, 53 were positive for dengue infection. NS1 antigen was detected in 12 patients. In five of these cases, neither IgM nor IgG was detected.

Discussion: Viral isolation and RT-PCR are time consuming and expensive. Therefore, their use in routine labs is not feasible. In our study, there were more number of secondary dengue infections than primary dengue cases. Among the 13 cases of primary dengue infection, NS1 antigen was the only marker detected in five cases.

Conclusion: Dengue NS1 Ag detection test is highly appropriate for field-testing conditions, particularly for early acute-phase samples, as its sensitivity and specificity far exceeds those of the MAC-ELISA for such samples


Dengue infection, NS1 antigen, Dengue IgM and IgG

Full Text:



Chakravarti A, Kumaria R. Eco-epidemiological analysis

of dengue infection during an outbreak of denguefever. India Virology Journal 2005; 2: 32.

Vijayakumar TS, Chandy S, Narayanan S et al. Is dengue

emerging as major health problem? Indian J Med Res

; 121:100-07

Dhar S, Malakar R, Ghosh A et al. The recent epidemic

of dengue fever in West Bengal: Clinico-serological

pattern. Indian J Dermat 2006; 51: 1: 57-59

Sekaran SD, Ew Cheng Lan, Subramaniam G. Comparison

of five serological diagnostic assays for detection of IgM

and IgG antibodies to dengue virus. African Journal of

Microbiology Research 2008; 2: 141-47.

Sérgio Oliveira De Paula, Benedito Antônio Lopes da

Fonseca. Dengue: A review of the laboratory tests a

clinician must know to achieve a correct diagnosis.

Braz J Infect Dis 2004; 8: 6.

Vaughn DW, Nisalak A, Solomon T et al. Rapid serologic

diagnosis of dengue virus infection using a commercial

capture ELISA that distinguishes primary and secondary

infections. Am J Trop Med Hyg 1999; 60: 693-98.

Dussart P, Labeau B, Lagathu G et al. Evaluation of an

enzyme immunoassay for detection of dengue virus

NS1 antigen in human serum. Clin Vaccine Immunol.

; 13(11): 1185-89.

Alcon S, Talarmin A, Debruyne M et al. Enzyme-linked

immunosorbent assay specific to dengue virus type

nonstructural protein NS1 reveals circulation of

the antigen in the blood during the acute phase of

disease in patients experiencing primary or secondary

infections. J. Clin. Microbiol. 2002; 40: 376-71.

Kumarasamy V, Wahab AHA, Chua SK et al. Evaluation

of a commercial dengue NS1 antigen-capture ELISA for

laboratory diagnosis of acute dengue virus infection.

J Virol Methods 2007; 140: 75-79.

Datta S, Wattal C. Dengue NS1 antigen detection: A

useful tool in early diagnosis of dengue virus infection.

Indian J Med Microbiol 2010; 28: 107-10.

Zhang H, Li W, Wang J et al. NS1-based tests supplying

a diagnostic utility for confirming dengue infection:

A meta-analysis. International Journal of Infectious

Diseases 2014; 57-66.

Gupta N, Srivastava S, Jain A et al. Dengue in India.

The Indian Journal of Medical Research 2012; 136(3):



  • There are currently no refbacks.

Copyright (c) 2018 Journal of Communicable Diseases

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.