BioCollections Worldwide Inc. Develops Assay to Detect Chikungunya Virus


BioCollections Worldwide, Inc. (BCW) announces the successful development of a Laboratory Developed Assay/test (LDA) for the detection of the Chikungunya virus. The LDA follows the CDC's Real Time RT-PCR for Detection of Chikungunya Virus Protocol. BCW's Real-Time Reverse Transcription Polymerase Chain Reaction (RT-PCR) test detects cases in the acute stage of the Chikungunya infection, with results about five hours after the sample has been received.

"This test will help doctors and health authorities to quickly differentiate Chikungunya infection from other mosquito borne viruses that share the same health symptoms," says Sixto Pacheco, president and CEO of BCW.

The samples used for the development of the LDA were collected last year in the Caribbean and Florida, under BCW's Emerging Infectious Diseases Surveillance Protocol.  This Protocol allows BCW's mobile team to collect samples globally for Chikungunya and other emerging infectious diseases. As the Chikungunya virus moves through Central and South America, BCW's mobile team will continue to collect samples and track, if any, changes in the virus's mutation that can affect the LDA test.

According to Pacheco, this development is a breakthrough for BCW since to date there are no FDA-approved Chikungunya diagnostic or blood screening tests in the United States.

Chikungunya (CHIK) fever is a re-emerging Aedes mosquito-transmitted viral disease caused by CHIK virus belonging to the Togaviridae family of genus Alphavirus. The disease is almost self-limiting, occurs with characteristic triad of sudden onset fever, rash and arthritis. During the recent outbreak the virus was also found to cause long-term joint pain, severe neurological disease and even fatalities.

According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), as of Dec. 16, 2014 a total of 2,021 Chikungunya virus disease cases have been reported in the United States. Eleven locally-transmitted cases have been reported in Florida. All other cases occurred in travelers returning from affected areas in the Americas, Asia and the Pacific Islands.

Source: BioCollections Worldwide Inc. (BCW)

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