A sensitive epitope-blocking ELISA for the detection of Chikungunya virus-specific antibodies in patients

L.Y.H. Goh, Y.W. Kam, S.W.H. Metz, J. Hobson-Peters, N.A. Prow, S. McCarthy, D.W. Smith, G.P. Pijlman, L.F.P. Ng, R.A. Hall*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)


Chikungunya fever (CHIKF) has re-emerged as an arboviral disease that mimics clinical symptoms of other diseases such as dengue, malaria, as well as other alphavirus-related illnesses leading to problems with definitive diagnosis of the infection. Herein we describe the development and evaluation of a sensitive epitope-blocking ELISA (EB-ELISA) capable of specifically detecting anti-chikungunya virus (CHIKV) antibodies in clinical samples. The assay uses a monoclonal antibody (mAb) that binds an epitope on the E2 protein of CHIKV and does not exhibit cross-reactivity to other related alphaviruses. We also demonstrated the use of recombinant CHIK virus-like particles (VLPs) as a safe alternative antigen to infectious virions in the assay. Based on testing of 60 serum samples from patients in the acute or convalescent phase of CHIKV infection, the EB-ELISA provided us with 100% sensitivity, and exhibited 98.5% specificity when Ross River virus (RRV)- or Barmah Forest virus (BFV)-immune serum samples were included. This assay meets the public health demands of a rapid, robust, sensitive and specific, yet simple assay for specifically diagnosing CHIK-infections in humans.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)55-61
JournalJournal of Virological Methods
Publication statusPublished - 2015


  • west-nile-virus
  • linked-immunosorbent-assay
  • valley encephalitis-virus
  • monoclonal-antibodies
  • diagnostic-accuracy
  • universal detection
  • reunion island
  • insect cells
  • ns1 protein
  • pcr assay


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