In view of the doom and gloom news that surround the H5N1 influenza, we thought to bring to your attention two products that offer rapid and easy way to id the viral strains in symptomatic patients.
The BD Directigen™ EZ Flu A+B test is a rapid chromatographic immunoassay for the direct detection of influenza A and B viral antigens from nasopharyngeal washes or aspirates, and throat swabs of symptomatic patients. The test is to be used as an aid in the diagnosis of influenza A and B viral infections, according to Becton, Dickinson and Company, the manufacturer out of New Jersey. This device, quick enough to give results in only 15 minutes is available now. Details about this product are here.
A similarly designed product is available in Europe as Xpect® Flu A & B test. The test “detects and distinguishes the type A influenza virus from type B in just 15 minutes, and with 100% specificity, directly from nose or throat swabs”, according to Oxoid Limited, a UK firm:
This simple lateral flow test is extremely easy to perform and interpret, giving virologists quick and valuable information with which to target further investigations and patient care. For samples that may require transportation, a wide variety of transport media are suitable. Furthermore, samples can be refrigerated and tested within 72 hours or frozen at -20°C or below and tested within 6 months.
More at the Oxoid’s press release…