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FDA Clears Roche's PCR Test for Detecting West Nile Virus in Donor Blood

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) — Roche Diagnostics today said that the US Food and Drug Administration has cleared its PCR-based test for detecting West Nile Virus in donated human blood and plasma.
 
The test, called the cobas TaqScreen West Nile Virus test, enables researchers to detect the virus earlier in the infection cycle in donors who may show no symptoms of disease, according to Roche.
 
Though the virus is principally transmitted to humans through mosquito bites, it can also infect humans by transfusion of infected blood or blood products.
 
According to the US Center for Disease Control and Prevention, US-based blood-screening centers identified 340 donors whose blood tested positive for West Nile virus in 2006 and 23 so far in 2007.

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