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Volume 14, Number 7—July 2008


Proficiency of Nucleic Acid Tests for Avian Influenza Viruses, Australasia

Sacha Stelzer-Braid*†, Ros Escott‡, Cristina Baleriola*, Peter D. Kirkland§, Peter Robertson*, Michael Catton¶, and William D. Rawlinson*†Comments to Author 
Author affiliations: *Prince of Wales Hospital, Randwick, New South Wales, Australia; †University of New South Wales, Kensington, New South Wales, Australia; ‡Royal College of Pathologists of Australasia, North Ryde, New South Wales, Australia; §Elizabeth Macarthur Agricultural Institute, Camden, New South Wales, Australia; ¶Victorian Infectious Diseases Reference Laboratory, North Melbourne, Victoria, Australia;

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Table 2

Summary of avian influenza quality assurance project, Australasia*

Panel no.† Date % Correct results, Indonesian strain‡ % Correct results, Vietnamese strain‡ % Testing for influenza A matrix Most common 
extraction method 
(% participants) Most common amplification method 
(% participants)
1 2006 Oct 7 87.5 80 46 QIAGEN QIAamp viral RNA minikit (50) QIAGEN Artus Influenza/H5 LC RT-PCR kit (20)
2 2006 Nov 9 84 84 73 QIAGEN QIAamp viral RNA minikit (50) Invitrogen Superscript III qRT-PCR (31)
3 2006 Jun 11 82 88 75 QIAGEN QIAamp viral RNA minikit (50) Invitrogen Superscript III qRT-PCR (40)

*RT-PCR, reverse transcription–PCR.
†Panels 2 and 3 had 2 very low dilutions of subtype H5N1 that were beyond the limit of detection for most laboratories. Percentage of correct results reported for the Indonesian and Vietnamese strains, with these results included, is 59 and 59 for panel 2 and 56 and 66 for panel 3, respectively.
‡Results reported for influenza H5/(H5N1) testing.

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