From the Journals

Real-time microarrays can simultaneously detect HCV and HIV-1, -2 infections



The use of TaqMan Array Card (TAC) microarrays has been extended to permit simultaneous detection of HIV-1, HIV-2, and five hepatitis viruses from a small amount of extracted nucleic acid, according to a study by Timothy C. Granade, MD, and his colleagues at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta.

Vials of blood copyright Martynasfoto/Thinkstock

This is particularly important for dealing with HIV-infected individuals, because HIV-1 and HIV-2 require different treatment interventions, and approximately one-third of HIV-infected patients have been found to be coinfected with hepatitis C or hepatitis B, according to the study report, published in the Journal of Virological Methods (J Virol Methods. 2018 Sep;259:60-5).

HIV-1-positive plasma samples from a variety of subtypes as well as whole blood specimens were confirmed for HIV-1-infection serologically or by nucleic amplification methods. HIV-2 whole blood and plasma specimens were also obtained.

TAC cards contained one positive control, one negative control, three HIV-1 replicates, and two HIV-2 replicates. In addition, the five common hepatitis viruses (A-E) were each replicated three times on each card. The cards were used to test the RNA isolates obtained from the various samples.

Ninety-five of the 104 known HIV-1-positive specimens were assayed positive using TAC; 23 of 26 HIV-2-seeded specimens were detectable using TAC and no cross-reactivity was seen between HIV-1-positive and HIV-2-positive specimens.

Eighteen of the HIV-1-positive specimens were also reactive in triplicate for HCV; three of the HIV-1-positive specimens were reactive to HBV and one specimen was reactive to HIV-1, HBV, and HCV.

β€œThe TAC assay could be invaluable in large-scale screening environments or in surveying local outbreaks such as the recent HIV cluster found in Indiana. Many of these individuals were later determined to be infected with hepatitis C. The use of TAC could shorten the time to identifying and confirming such cases and permit the detection of multiple blood-borne infections in a single test. Application of TAC technology to general population surveillance could identify problem areas for both HIV prevention and intervention efforts in a variety of global environs,” the researchers concluded.

The authors were employed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, which funded the study.

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