Improved detection of genus-specific Alphavirus using a generic TaqMan® assay

Abstract : Background: Alphaviruses are arthropod borne RNA viruses of medical importance. Geographical expansion of mosquitoes of the Aedes genus in the past decades has been associated with major Alphavirus-associated outbreaks. Climate changes and intensification of air travels have favored vector expansion and virus dissemination in new territories leading to virus emergence not only in tropical areas but also in temperate regions. The detection of emergence is based upon surveillance networks with epidemiological and laboratory investigation. Method: A specific, sensitive and rapid screening test for genus-specific Alphavirus is critically required. To address this issue, we developed a new molecular assay targeting nsP4 gene and using a TaqMan® real time RT-PCR method for the specific detection of all major Alphavirus genus members. Results: This assay was tested for specificity using several Alphavirus species. We also tested successfully clinical sensitivity using patient’s samples collected during the Chikungunya outbreak of 2005–2006 in the Indian Ocean. Conclusions: This new pan-Alphavirus molecular diagnostic tool offers great potential for exclusion diagnosis and emergence detection given its broad specificity restricted to Alphavirus genus
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Claude Giry, Bénédicte Roquebert, Ghislaine Li-Pat-Yuen, Philippe Gasque, Marie-Christine Jaffar-Bandjee. Improved detection of genus-specific Alphavirus using a generic TaqMan® assay. BMC Microbiology, BioMed Central, 2017, 17, pp.164. ⟨10.1186/s12866-017-1080-9⟩. ⟨hal-01703105⟩

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