Article Published by POLS ONE on December 1, 2016
Traditional methods for detection and serotyping of enterovirus infections are virus isolation and immunofluorescence assay (VI-IFA), which are labor-intensive and time-consuming. Recently, VP1 gene has been targeted to develop a CODEHOP-based RT-PCR (VP1- CODEHOP) for the same purpose. In this study, we conducted a 5-year enterovirus surveil- lance comparing the VI-IFA and VP1-CODEHOP tests. Throat swabs were collected from 431 pediatric patients and 208(48%) and 250(58%) were tested positive by the VI-IFA and VP1-CODEHOP tests, respectively. Among the 47 cases who had inconsistent results between the VI-IFA and VP1-CODEHOP tests and provided paired sera for serological verifications, correct diagnosis for the VI-IFA and VP1-CODEHOP were 5(11%) and 40(85%) cases, respectively. Therefore, the VP1-CODEHOP is more reliable for detection of human enteroviruses than the VI-IFA. Based on serological verifications for the eight cases who had inconsistent serotypes between the two tests and provided paired sera, five and two showed consistent serotypes with the VP1-CODEHOP and VI-IFA tests, respec- tively. CVA16, CVA6 and EV71 were the most prevalent serotypes in northern Taiwan, 2008~2012. Moreover, variant CVA2, CVA6 and EV71 viruses were further identified based on phylogenetic analysis of partial VP1 sequences. In conclusion, the VP1-CODEHOP test could be used as the primary method for enterovirus surveillance to support decision-mak- ing for outbreak control.