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Euro Surveill. 2012 Sep 27;17(39). pii: 20285.

Detection of a novel human coronavirus by real-time reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction.

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Institute of Virology, University of Bonn Medical Centre, Bonn, Germany.

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  • Euro Surveill. 2012;17(40): pii/20288.


We present two real-time reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction assays for a novel human coronavirus (CoV), targeting regions upstream of the E gene (upE) or within open reading frame (ORF)1b, respectively. Sensitivity for upE is 3.4 copies per reaction (95% confidence interval (CI): 2.5–6.9 copies) or 291 copies/mL of sample. No cross-reactivity was observed with coronaviruses OC43, NL63, 229E, SARS-CoV, nor with 92 clinical specimens containing common human respiratory viruses. We recommend using upE for screening and ORF1b for confirmation.

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