By: Emily Robie, MSc
Differentiating between various mosquito-borne illnesses is challenging as the clinical presentation for Chikungunya, Zika, and dengue are often similar, however, population health measures and individual treatment plans are dependent on correctly identifying which viruses are circulating within a population. To meet this need, biotechnology company Tetracore has developed a system for testing clinical samples simultaneously for the presence of various arboviruses.
Under the leadership of Drs. Gregory Gray and Teck-Hock Toh, a pilot study sought to field test the Tetracore system’s ability to differentiate between arboviruses in clinical samples. With this aim in mind, researchers at the Clinical Research Centre Laboratory at Sibu Hospital in Sarawak, Malaysia collected samples from 67 participants presenting with dengue-like illness at four public clinics, and studied their specimens for evidence of Chikungunya, Zika, and dengue. Samples were analyzed both with traditional polymerase chain reaction (PCR) assays and with a cartridge-based multiplexing platform by Tetracore, designed as a point-of-care diagnostic tool that streamlines laboratory work.
The researchers found nine patients to be positive for dengue through PCR analysis, and 14 as dengue-positive through the multiplexing platform. No evidence was found for either Chikungunya or Zika infections among any of the study participants. As the study continues to enroll participants, the new focus will be on serotyping positive dengue specimens.
The full article can be found here.