Zika virus (ZIKV)
- Ultrasensitive qualitative detection of Zikavirus by
reverse transcription coupled real time polymerase chain
Zika virus (ZIKV) is an enveloped single-stranded RNA virus belonging to
the flaviviridae family. It is spread by the bites of
Aedes mosquitoes, such as A.
aegypti and A.
There are two Zika genotypes: the African lineage and the Asian lineage.
Phylogenetic studies indicate that the virus spreading in the
Americas is 89% identical to African genotypes. The primary host
for this virus is believed to be monkeys. In fact, the virus was
first isolated in April 1947 from a rhesus macaque monkey placed
in a cage in the Ziika Forest of Uganda, near Lake Victoria.
Infection of humans had been considered an uncommon event until
the outbreak in Micronesia during 2007 which led to more
widespread research on the virus. Serological studies have now
shown that a significant percentage of the human population
carries neutralizing antibodies to the virus, suggesting prior
exposure to the virus.
For most people, Zika viral infection is a very mild infection and is not
harmful. When present, symptoms associated with the disease are
non-distinctive and may include rash, itching all over the body,
fever, headache, joint pain, muscle pain, conjunctivitis and
lower back pain. However, the infection can be serious for
pregnant women because it can cause birth defects, especially
microcephaly. Babies born from infected mothers can also suffer
developmental delay and mental retardation.
Serological detection of Zika virus is usually not very helpful because
Zika virus cross-reacts serologically with other flaviviruses,
such as dengue, West Nile, and yellow fever. Current or past
infection, or even vaccination with another flavivirus, will
often cause false-positive or uninterpretable Zika serology
results. On the other hand, molecular detection by polymerase
chain reaction (PCR) is a more useful approach to rapidly
identify the virus and confirm the diagnosis (Cabral-Castro et
Help confirm the disease causing agent
Help ensure that animal colonies are free of this virus
Early prevention of spread of this virus among a colony
Minimize human exposure to this virus
Safety monitoring of biological products and vaccines that
derive from primates
Cabral-Castro, M.J., Cavalcanti, M.G., Peralta, R.H.S. and Peralta, J.M.
(2016) Molecular and serological techniques to detect
co-circulation of DENV, ZIKV and CHIKV in suspected dengue-like
syndrome patients. J. Clin. Virol. 82:108-111
0.2 ml whole blood in EDTA (purple top) or ACD (yellow top) tube,
or 0.2 ml serum, or 0.2 ml urine, or 0.2
ml fresh or frozen tissue.
Contact Zoologix if advice is needed to determine an appropriate specimen type for a specific diagnostic application. For specimen types not listed here, please contact Zoologix to confirm specimen acceptability and shipping instructions.
For all 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
shipping instructions for more information.
2 business days
Qualitative reverse transcription coupled real time PCR