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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Detection of Lassa virus RNA in specimens from patients with Lassa fever by using the polymerase chain reaction.

Suitable oligonucleotide primers and probes were synthesized to amplify Lassa virus (Josiah strain)-specific nucleoprotein and glycoprotein gene fragments by using reverse transcription combined with the polymerase chain reaction (PCR). Our primers did not amplify the related lymphocytic choriomeningitis virus. By using PCR, about 50 50% tissue culture infective doses could be detected in the supernatant of infected cells. Furthermore, in all five serum specimens and four of five urine specimens of patients with acute Lassa fever, viral RNA could be demonstrated. Negative results were obtained with all serum and urine specimens of healthy subjects. Our data suggest that PCR may be applied as an alternative to virus isolation in the rapid diagnosis of Lassa fever.[1]


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