Author(s): Dittmar K, Procter JL, Cipolone K, Njoroge JM, Miller J, , Dittmar K, Procter JL, Cipolone K, Njoroge JM, Miller J,
Abstract Share this page
Abstract BACKGROUND: Detection of immunoglobulin or complement bound to RBCs by using the DAT is valuable in the diagnosis of immune-mediated hemolytic anemia. Traditionally, the DAT has been performed by tube agglutination using anti-IgG or anti-C3d. The purpose of this study was to compare the tube agglutination DAT to gel microcolumn, affinity microcolumn, and flow cytometric DATs on RBCs coated in vitro and on patient RBC samples. STUDY DESIGN AND METHODS: RBCs from 84 patients were assessed by tube agglutination DAT, one gel microcolumn DAT, and two affinity microcolumn DATs. One affinity microcolumn assay was unmodified and one was modified by the addition of polyspecific antiglobulin or anti-IgG as a secondary antibody. RBCs from 15 of the 84 patients underwent analysis by flow cytometry with fluorescence-labeled anti-IgG. The assays were also compared by using D+ RBCs sensitized with serially adjusted concentrations of anti-D. RESULTS: Both tube agglutination and gel microcolumn DATs were positive in 49 patient samples; both assays were negative in 20 samples, and the results were discordant in 15. Gel microcolumn DATs were more likely than were tube agglutination DATs to detect IgG on RBCs. Affinity microcolumn DATs were less likely than gel microcolumn or tube agglutination DATs to detect IgG on RBCs. Flow cytometry results were the same as gel microcolumn results in 12 of 15 patient samples and the same as tube agglutination results in 13 of 15. Tube agglutination and both affinity microcolumn assays reacted with RBCs coated with anti-D that was diluted 1-in-100. The gel microcolumn and flow cytometry assays reacted with RBCs coated with anti-D diluted 1-in-400. There was no correlation between tube agglutination and gel microcolumn DATs in detecting bound C3d. CONCLUSION: Detection of IgG bound to RBCs was not consistent with the methods described. Gel microcolumn DATs were more sensitive than tube agglutination and affinity microcolumn DATs. Given the varied results of these assays, reference laboratories should not rely on a single method for DATs. More comprehensive testing should be performed when the tube agglutination DAT is negative in a patient with suspected immune-mediated hemolytic anemia. Further comparisons are necessary to determine the proficiency of flow cytometric assays.
This article was published in Transfusion
and referenced in Journal of Blood Disorders & Transfusion