The anticomplement immunofluorescence (ACIF) test was compared with complement fixation and fluorescent antibody to membrane antigen procedures for the detection of antibody to varicella-zoster virus. All of 50 sera from pregnant women contained antibody measured by ACIF (titer, greater than or equal to 1:10); only 27 (54%) were positive by complement fixation (P less than 0.01). For 16 paired sera obtained before and after varicella-zoster virus infection and tested by ACIF and fluorescent antibody to membrane antigen, the result agreed in 27 determinations (sensitivity, 94%; specificity, 81%). Of 99 sera submitted for routine determinations of immune status to the virus, 89 showed comparable results for both tests (sensitivity, 92.5%; specificity, 88%). The ACIF test offers a specific and sensitive alternative to the fluorescent antibody to membrane antigen procedure for the detection of antibody to varicella-zoster virus. In addition, the ACIF test is rapid, easy to perform, and uses commercially available reagents.
J. Clin. Microbiol.
Evaluation of the anticomplement immunofluorescence test for detection of antibody to varicella-zoster virus.