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Positive predictive value of seroconversion or positive rubella IgM in diagnosis of maternal rubella infection: Seven-years review of French National Reference Laboratory for Rubella

Abstract : Background: In France, as in most developed countries, childbearing age women are routinely screened for rubella antibodies to identify and vaccinate susceptible women. Immunity to rubella is usually determined by measuring the rubella virus-specific immunoglobulin G (RV-IgG). In case of seroconversion for RV-IgG and/or positive RVIgM during pregnancy, laboratories usually send serum samples to the French National Reference Laboratory (FNRL) for Rubella in order to perform complementary investigations and confirm or exclude rubella infection during pregnancy. Objective: Our aim is to report results of these investigations during a seven-year period (2013-2019) and evaluate the positive predictive value (PPV) of RV-IgG seroconversion or positive RV-IgM to diagnose maternal rubella infection in France. Study design: Between 2013 and 2019, 5398 serum samples collected from 4104 pregnant women, were addressed to FNRL because of RV-IgG seroconversion (N=899) or positive RV-IgM (N=3205). Additional serological tests were performed, mainly immunoblot (to look for the presence of anti-E1 protective antibody) and RV-IgG avidity (to exclude or confirm primary infection). Results: Overall, for 3724/4104 (90.8 %) women, rubella primary-infection during pregnancy was formally excluded and maternal rubella primary-infection was only confirmed in 46/4104 (1.1 %) cases. Conclusion: Clinicians and biologists should be particularly aware that RV-IgG seroconversion or positive RV-IgM, in the current context of low RV circulation in France are most often not rubella primary infections. PPV of seroconversion to assess maternal rubella primary infection is as low as 0.2 % (95 % CI: 0 %; 0.5 %) and PPV of positive RV-IgM is only of 1.4 % (95 % CI: 0.99 %; 1.81 %).
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https://www.hal.inserm.fr/inserm-03227595
Contributor : Emmanuelle Comets <>
Submitted on : Monday, May 17, 2021 - 2:07:19 PM
Last modification on : Saturday, July 3, 2021 - 12:13:22 AM
Long-term archiving on: : Wednesday, August 18, 2021 - 6:37:47 PM

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E. Bouthry, C. Perillaud-Dubois, P. Lebraud, M.P. Soutière, L. Grangeot-Keros, et al.. Positive predictive value of seroconversion or positive rubella IgM in diagnosis of maternal rubella infection: Seven-years review of French National Reference Laboratory for Rubella. Journal of Clinical Virology, Elsevier, 2021, 134, pp.104708. ⟨10.1016/j.jcv.2020.104708⟩. ⟨inserm-03227595⟩

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