Diagnostic Value of PCR and ELISA for Chlamydia trachomatis in a Group of Asymptomatic and Symptomatic Women in Isfahan, Iran

Document Type : Original Article


1 Biology Department, Faculty of Science, University of Isfahan, Isfahan, Iran

2 Shahid Beheshti Hospital, Isfahan, Iran

3 Reproductive Infections Department, Reproductive Biotechnology Research Center, Avesina Research Institute, Tehran, Iran


Chlamydia trachomatis infections are the most prevalent sexually transmitted bacterial infections (STI) in the world that lead to a cause of tubal factor infertility in women. The aim of this study is to determine the presence of C.trachomatis by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and ELISA.

Materials and methods
Endocervical swabs were collected from 80 women; 22 of them were asymptomatic and 58 symptomatic. Samples were examined by PCR designed to detect Chlamydial plasmid using specific KL1 and KL2 primers. Serum IgG and IgA antibodies to C.trachomatis were detected by ELISA. Since elevated CRP levels are a marker for inflammation, the presence of C- Reactive protein (CRP) has also been evaluated in all samples.

The rate of C.trachomatis infection by PCR was revealed to be 27.2% and 18.9% in asymptomatic and symptomatic women, respectively The χ2 test shows no significant difference (p value= 0.22). Serological screening was done on all samples. The high level of IgG and IgA to C.trachomatis infection was 29.4% and 17.6%, respectively. The presence of high levels of CRP, as a serological marker of persistence infection, was 31.8% and 34.4% in asymptomatic and symptomatic women, respectively. The high rate of CRP level in the samples indicates acute infections in both groups.

Genital C.trachomatis infection is the leading cause of tubal factor infertility. The present study shows that C.trachomatis infection could be present in symptomatic as well as asymptomatic women. Therefore, a screening test for C.trachomatis infection is recommended for all women who refer to gynecologic outpatient departments in Isfahan and other parts of Iran.