Performance evaluation of five commercial assays in assessing seroprevalence of HEV antibodies among blood donors uri icon


  • Conclusions. Due to discrepancies in the performance of various IgG and IgM assays, seroprevalence studies should be based on furher confirmatory testing for decisive conclusions to be reached.
  • Introduction. Although hepatitis E virus (HEV) is mainly transmitted via the faecal-oral route, the rate of HEV transmission via blood donation is on the rise. However, the seroprevalence of HEV among blood donors is not well established and is thought to be affected by the type of diagnostic assay used. We aimed to evaluate performance and correlation among widely used commercial diagnostic assays for the seroprevalence assessment of HEV-IgM/IgG among blood donors.
  • Methodology. A total of 1049 blood donor samples were tested for HEV IgG and IgM using different enzyme immunoassays (Wantai, Eruoimmune, MP diagnostics, Mikrogen immunoblot, HEV-IgM rapid test). The performance of each assay was evaluated according to our established silver standard value based on three or more IgG concordant assay results.
  • Results. HEV seroprevalence varied considerably using these assays, ranging from 10.1% (Euroimmune-ELISA) to 18.0% (Wanti-ELISA) for HEV-IgG, and from 0.2% (Wanti-ELISA) to 2.6% (MP Rapid test) for HEV-IgM. A total of 155 of 216 (71.6%) samples tested positive for HEV-IgG by three or more concordant assays. On the other hand, IgM assays showed poor agreement as only 7.6% (4/52) of the specimens were positive according to three or more concordant assay test results. All HEV-IgG assays revealed high sensitivity and specificity (ranging 96.5-100%), and excellent Kappa concordance (0.88-0.95), except for Euroimmun ELISA (sensitivity=61.5%, kappa=0.63). MP ELISA showed the highest levels of sensitivity (100%) and specificity (98.5%).

publication date

  • 2018
  • 2018