Detection of viruses

The unbiased DNA microarray testing has emerged as a promising new technology for broad-spectrum virus detection (metagenomic diagnostic), making it possible to test for the presence of thousands of viruses simultaneously without having a clear predetermination of what to look for. This is convenient e.g. in diagnostic for disease syndromes, in hematological patients, in travellers with exotic virus, and difficult to diagnose patients. We have developed a microarray platform, Pan-Virus Array.

At Statens Serum Institut, Virus R&D Laboratory (ViFU) we have established a sensitive Pan-virus detection platform for detection of all known viruses, as well as novel virus related to known virus families.

By modified extraction and initial random amplification this assay has a clinical relevant sensitivity with subsequent microarray identification of all viral pathogens in clinical samples (Erlandsson 2011, Rosenstierne 2014). The microarray contains 180.000 probes coding all sequenced virus, andis designed for both detection and discovery of new and known viruspathogens. Using this array, we have so far successfully identified both DNA and RNA viruses, present in a diverse set of clinical samples with same results as diagnostic PCR. This is useful for diagnostic and QA of samples that should be virus free, as well as in the initial discovery of new viruses in all kinds of human, animal and insect samples.

We use PCR and Next Generation Sequencing to confirm and expand the microarray findings.

  • Erlandsson L, Rosenstierne MW, McLoughlin K, Jaing C, Fomsgaard A. PLoS One. 2011;6(8):e22631. Epub 2011 Aug 10. The microbial detection array combined with random Phi29-amplification used as a diagnostic tool for virus detection in clinical samples.
  • Rosenstierne MW, McLoughlin KS, Olesen ML, Papa A, Gardner SN, Engler O, Plumet S, Mirazimi A, Weidmann M, Niedrig M, Fomsgaard A, Erlandsson L. PLoS One. 2014 Jun 25;9(6):e100813. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0100813. eCollection 2014. The microbial detection array for detection of emerging viruses in clinical samples--a useful panmicrobial diagnostic tool.


Claus Nielsen


Claus Nielsen, Director, MSc, PhD, Virus & Mikrobiologisk Specialdiagnostik
T. +45 32683280 @. View profile