The largest-ever independent, laboratory-based evaluation of rapid diagnostic tests (RDTs) for malaria has shown that some tests perform exceptionally well in tropical temperatures and can detect even low parasite densities in blood samples, while other tests were only able to detect malaria at high parasite densities. The evaluation was co-sponsored by the WHO Regional Office for the Western Pacific (WPRO), TDR, and the Foundation for Innovative New Diagnostics (FIND).
Testing was performed at the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Forty-one commercially available RDTs went through a blinded laboratory evaluation. The findings will serve as a tool aiding countries and donor agencies to make more informed choices about test purchases and use, from among the dozens of diagnostics commercially available. The performance evaluation will also inform procurement and prioritization for diagnostic test entry into the WHO Prequalification of Diagnostics Programme and WHO Procurement Schemes.
World Health Organization, Geneva. ISBN: 978 92 4 159807 1, 110 pp.
Malaria Rapid Diagnostic Test Performance - results of WHO product testing of malaria RDTs: Round 1 (2008)