Experience in PCR diagnosis of SARS coronavirus in Taiwan

Abstract number: 902_p1843

Lu J.J.


An outbreak of the severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) occurred in Taiwan in April, 2003, therefore we urgently established a nested RT-PCR and a real time RT-PCR to detect the SARS coronavirus.

Methods and Materials:

From May 5th to August 31st, we examined 2585 specimens from 814 patients or medical workers. Viral RNA was extracted with the Blue Extract solution or the Qiagen viral kit from various clinical specimens. Each sample was tested in duplicate by both PCR methods.


Eighty-eight of the 257 specimens from patients suspected to have SARS were positive for both PCR assays. These specimens included sputum (65%, 26/40), throat swabs (52%, 16/31), gargles (13%, 4/32), stool (35%, 17/48), urine (18%, 9/49), and blood (32%, 18/57).


Sputum and throat swabs were found to be the best sample types for the PCR assays, whereas gargle and urine samples were the least satisfactory. The first serum samples from 10 of the 30 SARS-probable patients were PCR positive, suggesting that serum samples can be used for early diagnosis of SARS.


Session Details

Date: 01/08/2007
Time: 00:00-00:00
Session name: XXIst ISTH Congress
Location: Oxford, UK
Presentation type:
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