Use of Whole Genome Sequencing Data for a First in Silico Specificity Evaluation of the RT-qPCR Assays Used for SARS-CoV-2 Detection.

Last updated on 5-1-2021 by Mathieu Gand

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Peer reviewed scientific article


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The current COronaVIrus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic started in December 2019. COVID-19 cases are confirmed by the detection of SARS-CoV-2 RNA in biological samples by RT-qPCR. However, limited numbers of SARS-CoV-2 genomes were available when the first RT-qPCR methods were developed in January 2020 for initial in silico specificity evaluation and to verify whether the targeted loci are highly conserved. Now that more whole genome data have become available, we used the bioinformatics tool SCREENED and a total of 4755 publicly available SARS-CoV-2 genomes, downloaded at two different ti…

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