Phipps LP, Essen SC, Brown IH. Genetic subtyping of influenza A viruses using RT-PCR with a single set of primers based on conserved sequences within the HA2 coding region. J Virol Methods. 2004 Dec;122(1):119-22
Phipps LP, Essen SC, Brown IH.
Influenza A viruses are subtyped conventionally according to the antigenic characteristics of the external glycoproteins, haemagglutinin (HA) and neuraminidase (NA). To date 15 HA and 9 NA subtypes have been described. There is a need to develop fast, accurate and reliable methods to identify influenza virus subtypes, which may be associated with disease outbreaks. An RT-PCR is described using a single primer pair based on a conserved region of the HA2 gene that can detect all 15 HA influenza A subtypes. The assay was validated initially using a panel of 12 known standard prototype strains of influenza virus representing 6 HA subtypes and subsequently in a blind study using a panel of 30 strains. Selected viruses represented all known HA subtypes derived from avian, swine and human hosts separated both geographically and with time Sequence analysis of RT-PCR product showed complete correlation with results obtained using conventional serological methods. It is concluded that this RT-PCR is a reliable, robust and reproducible tool for the rapid identification of a wide range of all the HA subtypes of influenza A viruses.
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