& livestock assay data sheet
- Ultrasensitive detection of Nipah virus by reverse transcription
coupled real time PCR
Nipah virus (NiV) is a member of genus
Henipavirus of the family
Paramyxoviridae. It was initially isolated and identified in
1999 during an outbreak of encephalitis and respiratory illness
among pig farmers and people with close contact with pigs in
Malaysia and Singapore. Its name is derived from Sungai Nipah, a
village in the Malaysian Peninsula where pig farmers became ill
Pigs infected with this virus have relatively mild symptoms. However,
infection of humans with this virus can result in severe
illness. When humans are exposed to this virus, there is an
incubation period of 5 to 14 days, patients then develop fever
and headache for 3-14 days, followed by drowsiness,
disorientation and mental confusion. These signs and symptoms
can progress to coma within 24-48 hours. Some patients have a
respiratory illness during the early part of their infections,
and half of the patients showing severe neurological signs
showed also pulmonary signs.
Even though patients may have recovered from infection, some patients can
develop persistent convulsions and personality changes. Latent
infections, with subsequent reactivation of the virus and death,
have been reported months and even years after exposure.
Flying foxes of the genus
Pteropus have been identified as the reservoir for this
virus. Transmission of the virus to humans results from
direct contact with infected bats, infected pigs, or other
Laboratory diagnosis of this viral infection can be achieved through
virus isolation, but this method is slow and not very sensitive.
Serological detection of antibody is not suitable for early
detection of the infection because it takes a few weeks for the
antibody to develop in patients. Real time PCR testing of throat
and nasal swabs, cerebrospinal fluid, urine, or blood can be
performed in early stages of the disease. This type of molecular
detection is sensitive, rapid and specific (Guillaume, 2004).
Help confirm the disease causing agent
Identify Nipah virus carriers
Help ensure that animal herds and populations are free of
Early prevention of spread of this virus among animals
Minimize human exposure to this virus
Safety monitoring of biological products that derive
Guillaume, V., Lefeuvre, A., Faure, C., Marianneau, P., Buckland, R.,
Lam, S.K., Wild, T.F. and Deubel, V. (2004) Specific detection
of Nipah virus using real-time RT-PCR (TaqMan) J. Virol. Methods
whole blood in EDTA (purple top) or ACD (yellow top) tube, or
nasal or throat swabs, or 0.2 ml urine, or 0.2 ml CSF, or 0.2 ml
fresh or frozen tissue.
types other than those listed here, please call to confirm
specimen acceptability and shipping instructions.
specimen types, if there will be a delay in shipping, or during
very warm weather, refrigerate specimens until shipped and ship
with a cold pack unless more stringent shipping requirements are
specified. Frozen specimens should be shipped so as to remain
frozen in transit. See
for more information.
2 business days
Qualitative reverse transcription coupled real time PCR