rodent and rabbit assay data sheet
(aka "novel coronavirus", 2019-nCoV, SARS-CoV-2)
Ultrasensitive qualitative detection of COVID19
by one-step reverse transcription real time PCR.
CDC guidance on SARS-CoV-2 testing in animals:
The decision to test an animal (including research
animals, livestock, and wild or zoo animals) should be based upon
a One Health approach. Consultation between veterinarians and appropriate local, state,
and/or federal public health and animal health officials is
USDA-NVSL can perform confirmatory testing on any samples
initially tested positive at Zoologix, and reports any confirmed
positive cases to the appropriate agencies to track the disease.
more common causes of illness in animals should be considered before considering
Zoologix performs COVID-19 PCR testing of research animal
samples, and on environmental samples. We believe that the current
shortage of human COVID-19 testing capacity can be mitigated by
diverting non-human samples requiring COVID-19 testing away from
human diagnostic labs whose full COVID-19 testing capacity is
needed for processing human clinical samples.
For this testing we are using the same PCR primer set, which
targets the same viral genetic sequence,
as the US Centers for Disease Control (CDC)-specified test being
used for human COVID-19 PCR testing. ZOOLOGIX DOES NOT PERFORM TESTING ON HUMAN CLINICAL
SAMPLES. Zoologix performs this testing on animal samples
submitted by veterinarians, and on environmental samples
submitted by professional environmental firms.
The CDC is encouraging and enabling a broad-based,
decentralized approach to COVID-19 testing. By performing
this testing on research animal samples from research
facilities and on environmental samples,
Zoologix hopes to be able to support and contribute to this
approach and do our part in helping to control the current
The novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV or SARS-CoV-2) outbreak, which
initially began in China, has spread rapidly around the globe.
This novel coronavirus, first known as 2019-nCoV, has been officially named by
the World Health Organization as COVID-19.
Various coronaviruses are found in animals and humans. Infection by these
viruses usually results in respiratory and enteric symptoms.
Historically, most coronaviral infections caused relatively mild
human clinical symptoms, until the severe acute respiratory
syndrome (SARS-CoV) outbreak in 2002 and 2003 in China, which
captured the attention of the medical community regarding the
severity of animal to human transmission of coronaviruses. A
decade later, the Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus
(MERS-CoV), another pathogenic coronavirus with a clinical
presentation reminiscent of SARS, was isolated in human patients
presenting with pneumonia. The MERS-CoV virus was again
confirmed to be transmitted from animals (in that case camels)
Similar to the origin of the HIV virus, scientists believe that when
coronaviruses, which often have minimal effects on host animals,
jump to humans, the human immune system may not be able to adapt
and hence, humans may develop severe reactions to these viral
infections. While the origin of the COVID-19 virus is not
certain, scientists are inclined to believe that this virus
derived from one of the exotic animals being sold for human
consumption in a Chinese “wet market.”
Though much remains to learn about the transmission characteristics of
this virus, including the range of animal species that can be
infected, it appears that the virus can survive on environmental
surfaces for some time and can infect rhesus macaques (Callaway,
Therefore to help protect people and laboratory animals from exposure, it may be useful
to test swabs of these surfaces and research animals, including
macaques and humanized mice, for the virus. PCR detection of
the virus can also be used in ongoing basic research on the
virus, as well as vaccine and therapeutic discovery work with
mice, monkeys and other animals.
Molecular detection by PCR is currently the best approach to quickly
identify animal carriers and environmental presence of the
virus. Due to the wide spread of the virus among
humans, routine checking for the virus in animals having had
contact with human caretakers may be necessary. Testing of
surface swipes or swabs for the virus may also help control
environmental transmission of the virus.
The primer sequence used in this test is identical to the primer sequence
published by CDC.
THIS TEST IS NOT TO BE USED FOR HUMAN CLINICAL TESTING. IT IS FOR
SUBMITTED BY A VETERINARIAN AND ENVIRONMENTAL SAMPLES ONLY.
Help identify research animals infected with the virus
Help prevent transmission of the virus on environmental surfaces
Minimize human exposure to the virus
Minimize unintended animal exposure to the virus
Virus research involving rodents and other research animals
Lan, L., Xu, D., Ye, G., et al. (2020) Positive RT-PCR test results in
patients recovered from COVID-19. JAMA. Published online
February 27, 2020. doi:10.1001/jama.2020.2783.
Todt, D., Pfaender, S., Steinmann, E. (March 2020) Persistence
of coronaviruses on inanimate surfaces and their inactivation
with biocidal agents, The Journal of Hospital Infection, Volume
104, Issue 3, Pages 246–251.
Callaway, Ewen (2020)
Monkeys and Mice Enlisted to Fight Coronavirus. Nature, Volume
579, 12 March 2020, page 183.
Nasal swab, or oral swab, or surface swab, or surface gauze pad swipe, or
or 0.1 ml EDTA whole blood (liquid or on
dry card), or 0.1 ml fresh or frozen tissue. Ship fresh samples immediately, overnight, on cold paks.
frozen samples so as to remain frozen until
their arrival at 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.
2 business days
reverse transcription real time PCR