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Development and Verification of Synthetic RNA Controls for Determination of Influenza Virus Load

Poster
Round, iridescent, green-blue  H1N1 (swine flu) virus with protrusions.

ASM 2014

Boston, Massachusetts, United States

May 01, 2014

Abstract

Influenza is one of the most significant causes of acute respiratory infection worldwide. Rapid diagnostic tests for highly contagious pathogens, such as Influenza, are essential for decreasing the public health impact of emerging infectious diseases and bioterrorism agents. However, these tests require positive controls that are not always readily available. Consequently, if worldwide public health laboratories are unable to meet the costly regulations required for the import, transfer, and safe use of pathogens used as controls, then critical diagnostic, surveillance, and epidemiological information could be missed.

The use of in vitro synthesized viral RNA as a control would provide essential equivalency standards that would be accessible to any laboratory performing quantitative RT-PCR tests. Synthetic RNA controls are particularly useful for laboratories that lack appropriate biosafety containment facilities for propagating a particular pathogenic virus or have difficulty gaining access to the organism in question due to international tightening of both import and export controls.

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