ABSTRACT Misdiagnosis of enteric fever is a major global health problem resulting in patient mismanagement, antimicrobial misuse and inaccurate disease burden estimates. Applying a machine-learning algorithm to host gene expression profiles, we identified a diagnostic signature which could accurately distinguish culture-confirmed enteric fever cases from other febrile illnesses (AUROC<95%). Applying this signature to a culture-negative suspected enteric fever cohort in Nepal identified a further 12.6% as likely true cases. Our analysis highlights the power of data-driven approaches to identify host-response patterns for the diagnosis of febrile illnesses. Expression signatures were validated using qPCR highlighting their utility as PCR-based diagnostic for use in endemic settings.
EMBO Molecular Medicine
Wiley Open Access