Novel, high-throutyput platform for rapid identification, quantintation, differential diagnosis, and resistance testing [ 2006 - 2008 ]

Also known as: Rapid quantified differential diagnosis and resistance for influenza

Research Grant

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Researchers: Prof Jonathan Iredell (Principal investigator) ,  Dr Belinda Herring Mr Bruce Harrison Prof Alison Kesson Prof Dominic Dwyer
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Brief description This proposal utilizes a newly invented process (multiplex tandem polymerase chain reaction, MT-PCR) to measure multiple (up to 100) genetic targets (eg RNA or DNA) in one sample. A range of different virus and bacterial genes can be detected, including those which make the influenza virus different (eg H1N1 or H5N1) and allow it to bypass vaccine immunity or resist drug therapy (due to neuraminidase inhibitor resistance). We will simultaneously target infections which are influenza-like (ILI) or which might make influenza infection worse (eg staphylococcal pneumonia) as well as their resistance genes (eg MRSA). The test is rapid and automated and includes a specimen processing (DNA and RNA extraction) function that is being developed in parallel. We expect to be able to conduct high-throughput screening of multiple samples for a limited number of targets or conduct multiple tests on fewer specimens, simply by adjusting assay configuration. Measurement of the rise and fall in concentrations of influenza virus in infected persons will allow us to understand when they are no longer infectious to others, to predict when they are getting better or worse, and allow us to better understand the pattern of illness in people who are immunized against influenza or on drug therapy, or are in some other special category (eg immune compromise due to organ transplantation). While this will be able to be rolled out by our industry partners in the event of an influenza pandemic, it does not require an outbreak for successful development, and has value well beyond influenza diagnosis.

Funding Amount $AUD 333,362.07

Funding Scheme NHMRC Strategic Awards

Notes Urgent Research - Pandemic Influenza - H5N1

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