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J Med Virol. 1992 Dec;38(4):246-51.

Monitoring of patients for cytomegalovirus after organ transplantation by centrifugation culture and PCR.

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Institute of Virology, Humboldt University Medical School (Charité), Berlin, Germany.


A modified centrifugation culture technique and a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) is described for detection of early antigen and IE antigen DNA, respectively, for rapid and sensitive monitoring of active cytomegalovirus (HCMV) infection after organ transplantation. In a preliminary study, 541 clinical specimens (blood, urine, bronchoalveolar lavage, pharyngeal wash, sputum) from 59 organ recipients were assayed for HCMV antigen by centrifugation culture; 144 samples were tested by PCR simultaneously. Antigenemia detected by centrifugation culture correlated strongly with active HCMV infection and clinical symptoms and proved useful for monitoring the efficacy of antiviral therapy. PCR was more sensitive in an earlier phase of infection when centrifugation culture was still negative. The clinical usefulness of both methods is discussed.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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