Technical Expert Group Meeting Report: Commercial products for preserving clinical specimens for the diagnosis of tuberculosis
The Technical Expert Group (TEG) meeting was convened by the WHO Global TB Programme on 29 May 2017 in Geneva, Switzerland to review available evidence for the use of commercial sample transport products that could potentially improve the detection of MTB using culture-based and molecular methods. The objectives of the TEG were as follows:
- To review evidence from a systematic review for the use of available commercial sample transport products for the improved detection of MTB using culture based and molecular methods;
- To review evidence from an evaluation study for the use of OMNIgene•SPUTUM conducted by FIND;
- To identify implementation considerations and research priorities for the use and subsequent evaluation of sample transport products;
- To review the performance characteristics and finalise the draft target product profile (TPP) for sample transport products that improve the recovery of mycobacteria with culture.
The TEG evaluated the findings from two sets of evidence during the meeting and performed a final review of the performance characteristic in the TPP. Evidence from a systematic review of commercially available sample transport products and the findings from a study conducted by FIND for the use of OMNIgene•SPUTUM solution were assessed by the TEG. This meeting report provides a summary of the evidence for the use of individual commercial sample transport products.