Screening blood donations for Zika virus is costly, low yield

May 11, 2018

(HealthDay)—Screening blood donations for Zika virus (ZIKV) in the United States is costly with low yield, according to a study published in the May 10 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

Paula Saá, Ph.D. from the American Red Cross in Gaithersburg, Md., and colleagues implemented investigational screening of donated blood for ZIKV RNA with transcription-mediated amplification (TMA). Repeat TMA, TMA testing in exploratory minipools, real-time reverse-transcriptase , immunoglobulin M (IgM) serologic testing, and red-cell TMA were performed as confirmatory testing of reactive donations.

The researchers found that 9 percent of the 4,325,889 donations that were screened were initially tested in minipools, and there were no reactive donations. Overall, 160 of the 3,932,176 donations that were subsequently tested individually were initially reactive and nine were confirmed positive. Six of the confirmed positive donations were reactive on repeat TMA; four of these were IgM negative and all three that could be tested were reactive on minipool TMA. Two of the confirmed positive donors had infections that were transmitted locally, six had travelled to ZIKV-active areas, and one had received an experimental ZIKV vaccine. The cost of identifying eight mosquito-borne ZIKV infections through individual-unit nucleic acid testing was $5.3 million per ZIKV RNA-positive donation.

"Screening of U.S. for ZIKV by individual-donation TMA was costly and had a low yield," the authors write.

The study was partially funded by Grifols Diagnostic Solutions.

Explore further: Screening cuts transfusion-transmitted babesiosis risk

More information: Abstract/Full Text
Editorial

Related Stories

Screening cuts transfusion-transmitted babesiosis risk

December 9, 2016
(HealthDay)—Screening for Babesia microti antibodies and DNA in blood-donation samples is associated with a reduction in the risk of transfusion-transmitted babesiosis, according to a study published in the Dec. 8 issue ...

Research addresses the threat of Zika virus to the US blood supply

March 27, 2017
Investigators have shown that certain screening methods that detect the genetic material of Zika virus can be used to ensure that donated blood supplies remain free of the virus.

First test to detect Zika in blood donations approved

October 9, 2017
(HealthDay)—The cobas Zika test has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration—the first approved screening test to detect the Zika virus in blood donations.

Blood donor screening for hepatitis E reveals incidence is higher than previously reported

April 21, 2017
Results from a study presented today found that the incidence of HEV RNA in asymptomatic blood donors from Germany is higher than previously reported. The study, presented at The International Liver Congress 2017 in Amsterdam, ...

Antibody 'cocktail' can prevent Zika infection but is not effective for treatment of fetuses

April 26, 2018
A "cocktail" of monoclonal antibodies that can prevent Zika virus (ZIKV) infection in primates was not effective for treatment of fetuses, according to a new collaborative study led by a University of Miami Miller School ...

Recommended for you

Breakthrough in designing a better Salmonella vaccine

September 24, 2018
UC Davis researchers announce in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences this week a breakthrough in understanding which cells afford optimal protection against Salmonella infection—a critical step in developing ...

Antifungal agent found to be possible treatment for porphyria

September 24, 2018
A large team of researchers from Spain, France and the U.S. has found that a common antifungal agent might be useful as a treatment for a rare type of porphyria. In their paper published in the journal Science Translational ...

New findings on the muscle disease Laing early-onset distal myopathy

September 24, 2018
New avenues are now being opened toward treatment of Laing distal myopathy, a rare disorder that causes atrophy of the muscles in the feet, hands and elsewhere. In a study published in the journal PNAS, researchers have identified ...

Insulin shows great potential against chronic colitis

September 24, 2018
Diabetes is not the only disease on which insulin has an effect, it appears. In a new study using tests on mice, researchers from the University of Copenhagen, among others, have discovered a new method for treating chronic ...

A new approach to developing a vaccine against vivax malaria

September 21, 2018
A novel study reports an innovative approach for developing a vaccine against Plasmodium vivax, the most prevalent human malaria parasite outside sub-Saharan Africa. The study led by Hernando A. del Portillo and Carmen Fernandez-Becerra, ...

Pre-clinical success for a universal flu vaccine offers hope for third generation approach

September 21, 2018
Researchers from the University of Oxford's Department of Zoology have demonstrated pre-clinical success for a universal flu vaccine in a new paper published in Nature Communications.

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.