Assessment of the utility of a commercial calprotectin and lactoferrin rapid test in diagnosis of marmoset wasting syndrome

  • Guillaume Douay Wildlife Reserves Singapore
  • Rina Maguire
  • Francis Cabana
  • Mélanie Bethet
  • Zi Teng Lim
  • Anna Meredith
Keywords: Callitrichids, inflammation, biomarker, calprotectin, marmoset wasting syndrome


This study assessed the detection of faecal biomarkers in captive callitrichids affected by Marmoset Wasting Syndrome (MWS), using a commercial colored chromatographic immunoassay intended for the detection of calprotectin and lactoferrin in humans affected by inflammatory intestinal diseases. The test was applied to faecal samples from 77 animals of 11 callitrichid species. Animals were divided into two groups consisting of 23 animals affected by MWS and 54 apparently healthy animals. All samples tested negative for lactoferrin while 64.9 % tested positive for calprotectin. The commercial test exhibited a high sensitivity (95.6%) but a low specificity (48.1%) for calprotectin, indicating poor utility in detecting new cases of MWS in a given population. A semi-quantitative assessment of the commercial test revealed a statistically significant difference between affected and non-affected animals for calprotectin (25.10/9.53, W = 226, p-value = 4.389e-05).

Although the use of fecal biomarkers in the context of wasting syndrome did not seem to be completely conclusive, it would be interesting to investigate further as some trends were noticed in this study.