Nucleic acid dipstick test for molecular diagnosis of pandemic H1N1

Liang Ta Wu, Martin Curran, Joanna Ellis, Surendra Parmar, Allyson V. Ritchie, Pia I. Sharma, Jean Pierre Allain, Hamid Jalal, Maria Zambon, Helen H. Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)


A new nucleic acid amplification-based rapid test for diagnosis of pandemic influenza (H1N1) 2009 virus was developed. The molecular test for pandemic H1N1, SAMBA (simple amplification-based assay), is based on isothermal amplification and visual detection on a dipstick characterized by high sensitivity, high specificity, a short turnaround time, and minimal technical requirements. The amplification step is monitored with an internal control to ensure correct interpretation of test results. The clinical performance of this assay was evaluated using blinded RNA samples extracted from nasal/throat swab specimens from 262 patients exhibiting influenza-like illness. Compared with the United Kingdom National Standard Method, based on quantitative reverse transcription-PCR, the sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value, and negative predictive value of the new assay were 95.3% (95% confidence interval, 88.5 to 98.7%), 99.4% (95% confidence interval, 96.9 to 99.9%), 98.8% (95% confidence interval, 93.5 to 99.9%), and 97.8% (95% confidence interval, 94.4 to 99.4%), respectively. The SAMBA for pandemic H1N1 provides a new technology that could potentially facilitate timely diagnosis and management of infected individuals, thereby informing decision making with regard to patient isolation during a pandemic outbreak.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3608-3613
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Clinical Microbiology
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2010


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