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J Virol Methods. 2013 Feb;187(2):357-61. doi: 10.1016/j.jviromet.2012.10.015. Epub 2012 Nov 8.

Comparative evaluation of a triplex nucleic acid test for detection of HBV DNA, HCV RNA, and HIV-1 RNA, with the Procleix Tigris System.

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Research Center of Food Safety and Detection, College of Light Industry and Food Sciences, South China University of Technology, Guangzhou 510640, China.


Nucleic acid testing (NAT) is valuable for screening blood donors for occult hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection and infection during the window period in countries where HBV is endemic, such as China. An "in-house" NAT (Triplex NAT) was developed for screening for HBV DNA, hepatitis C virus (HCV) RNA, and the human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) RNA. Using the Triplex NAT, a head-to-head comparative clinical evaluation was carried out against the most common commercial NAT used for blood screening in China: the Procleix Tigris System. A total of 33,025 specimens which were negative for Hepatitis B surface antigen, HCV antibody and HIV-1 antibody/antigen from potential blood donors were tested for HBV DNA, HCV RNA, and HIV-1 RNA by both the in-house Triplex assay and the commercially available Procleix Tigris System. Eleven specimens were detected as HBV positive by both NATs. Twelve specimens were detected as HBV positive by the Procleix Ultrio assay and the discriminatory assays, and not the Triplex. Twenty-eight specimens were detected as HBV positive by the Triplex and not the Procleix Ultrio. This study, combined with other data obtained in China, suggest that at least 50% HBV surface antigen negative but DNA-positive blood donations would be undetected using the current commercial NATs because of their insufficient sensitivity and/or Mini-Pool formatting strategies.

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