Cholera epidemics, caused by V. cholerae serotype 01, continue to be a devastating disease of immense global significance in many developing countries. Clinically, cholera may range from asymptomatic colonization to severe diarrhea with massive fluid loss, leading to dehydration, electrolyte disturbances, and death. V. cholerae 01 causes this secretory diarrhea by colonization of the small intestine and production of a potent cholera toxin. Because of the clinical and epidemiological importance of cholera, it is critical to determine as quickly as possible whether the organism from a patient with watery diarrhea is V. cholerae 012.
A fast, simple and reliable method for detecting V. cholerae 01 would be of great value for clinicians in managing the disease and for public health officials in instituting control measures. Monoclonal antibody which harbors the specificity for the 01 antigen should circumvent the many inherent problems encountered when polyclonal anti-01 antibody is used to identify V. cholerae 01 from clinical and environmental specimens3. The Cholera SMART II utilizes a monoclonal antibody - polyclonal antibody based sandwich format. The monoclonal antibody is specific for the A antigen of 01 lipopolysaccharide (LPS) of V. cholerae 014. The Cholera SMART II test is simple, and can be performed in approximately 15 minutes.