Mark D. Perkins

Learn More
BACKGROUND Global control of tuberculosis is hampered by slow, insensitive diagnostic methods, particularly for the detection of drug-resistant forms and in patients with human immunodeficiency virus infection. Early detection is essential to reduce the death rate and interrupt transmission, but the complexity and infrastructure needs of sensitive methods(More)
BACKGROUND The Xpert MTB/RIF test (Cepheid, Sunnyvale, CA, USA) can detect tuberculosis and its multidrug-resistant form with very high sensitivity and specificity in controlled studies, but no performance data exist from district and subdistrict health facilities in tuberculosis-endemic countries. We aimed to assess operational feasibility, accuracy, and(More)
Current nucleic acid amplification methods to detect Mycobacterium tuberculosis are complex, labor-intensive, and technically challenging. We developed and performed the first analysis of the Cepheid Gene Xpert System's MTB/RIF assay, an integrated hands-free sputum-processing and real-time PCR system with rapid on-demand, near-patient technology, to(More)
BACKGROUND Xpert MTB/RIF (Xpert) is a promising new rapid diagnostic technology for tuberculosis (TB) that has characteristics that suggest large-scale roll-out. However, because the test is expensive, there are concerns among TB program managers and policy makers regarding its affordability for low- and middle-income settings. METHODS AND FINDINGS We(More)
Most of the world's tuberculosis cases occur in low-income and middle-income countries, where sputum microscopy with a conventional light microscope is the primary method for diagnosing pulmonary tuberculosis. A major shortcoming of conventional microscopy is its relatively low sensitivity compared with culture, especially in patients co-infected with HIV.(More)
BACKGROUND Malaria rapid diagnostic tests (RDTs) offer significant potential to improve the diagnosis of malaria, and are playing an increasing role in malaria case management, control and elimination. Peru, along with other South American countries, is moving to introduce malaria RDTs as components of malaria control programmes supported by the Global Fund(More)
BACKGROUND Current malaria diagnostic tests, including microscopy and antigen-detecting rapid tests, cannot reliably detect low-density infections. Molecular methods such as polymerase chain reaction (PCR) are highly sensitive but remain too complex for field deployment. A new commercial molecular assay based on loop-mediated isothermal amplification (LAMP)(More)
London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, Keppel Street, London, WC1E 7H, UK. Sexually Transmitted Diseases Diagnostics Initiative (SDI), World Health Organization, TDR/PRD, 20 Avenue Appia, CH 1211 Geneva 27, Switzerland. Department of Respiratory Medicine, Royal Free Hospital, London, NW3 2QG, UK. Foundation for Innovative New Diagnostics, 71 Avenue(More)
In low-income and middle-income countries, direct (unconcentrated) sputum smear microscopy is the primary method for diagnosing pulmonary tuberculosis. The method is fast, inexpensive, and specific for Mycobacterium tuberculosis in high incidence areas. The main limitations of direct microscopy are its relatively low sensitivity, especially in individuals(More)
Loop-mediated isothermal amplification (LAMP) of DNA offers the ability to detect very small quantities of pathogen DNA following minimal tissue sample processing and is thus an attractive methodology for point-of-care diagnostics. Previous attempts to diagnose malaria by the use of blood samples and LAMP have targeted the parasite small-subunit rRNA gene,(More)