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Evaluation of Commercially Available Viral Transport Medium (VTM) for SARS-CoV-2 Inactivation and Use in Point-of-Care (POC) Testing

1
Kirby Institute for Infection and Immunity in Society, UNSW Medicine, UNSW Sydney, Kensington, NSW 2052, Australia
2
NSW Health Pathology, Prince of Wales Hospital, Randwick, NSW 2052, Australia
3
NSW State Reference Laboratory for HIV-AIDS/St Vincent’s Hospital Sydney, St Vincent’s Centre for Applied Medical Research, St Vincent’s Hospital Sydney Limited, Darlinghurst, NSW 2010, Australia
4
Australia Pathology Queensland, Royal Brisbane and Women’s Hospital, Herston, QLD 4006, Australia
5
Centre for Clinical Research, The University of Queensland, Royal Brisbane and Women’s Hospital Campus, Herston, QLD 4006, Australia
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Viruses 2020, 12(11), 1208; https://doi.org/10.3390/v12111208
Received: 12 September 2020 / Revised: 16 October 2020 / Accepted: 21 October 2020 / Published: 23 October 2020
(This article belongs to the Section SARS-CoV-2 and COVID-19)
Critical to facilitating SARS-CoV-2 point-of-care (POC) testing is assurance that viruses present in specimens are inactivated onsite prior to processing. Here, we conducted experiments to determine the virucidal activity of commercially available Viral Transport Mediums (VTMs) to inactivate SARS-CoV-2. Independent testing methods for viral inactivation testing were applied, including a previously described World Health Organization (WHO) protocol, in addition to a buffer exchange method where the virus is physically separated from the VTM post exposure. The latter method enables sensitive detection of viral viability at higher viral titre when incubated with VTM. We demonstrate that VTM formulations, Primestore® Molecular Transport Medium (MTM) and COPAN eNAT™ completely inactivate high-titre SARS-CoV-2 virus (>1 × 107 copies/mL) and are compatible with POC processing. Furthermore, full viral inactivation was rapidly achieved in as little as 2 min of VTM exposure. We conclude that adding certain VTM formulations as a first step post specimen collection will render SARS-CoV-2 non-infectious for transport, or for further in-field POC molecular testing using rapid turnaround GeneXpert platforms or equivalent. View Full-Text
Keywords: SARS-CoV-2; inactivation; virucidal; diagnostic SARS-CoV-2; inactivation; virucidal; diagnostic
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MDPI and ACS Style

van Bockel, D.; Munier, C.M.L.; Turville, S.; Badman, S.G.; Walker, G.; Stella, A.O.; Aggarwal, A.; Yeang, M.; Condylios, A.; Kelleher, A.D.; Applegate, T.L.; Vallely, A.; Whiley, D.; Rawlinson, W.; Cunningham, P.; Kaldor, J.; Guy, R. Evaluation of Commercially Available Viral Transport Medium (VTM) for SARS-CoV-2 Inactivation and Use in Point-of-Care (POC) Testing. Viruses 2020, 12, 1208. https://doi.org/10.3390/v12111208

AMA Style

van Bockel D, Munier CML, Turville S, Badman SG, Walker G, Stella AO, Aggarwal A, Yeang M, Condylios A, Kelleher AD, Applegate TL, Vallely A, Whiley D, Rawlinson W, Cunningham P, Kaldor J, Guy R. Evaluation of Commercially Available Viral Transport Medium (VTM) for SARS-CoV-2 Inactivation and Use in Point-of-Care (POC) Testing. Viruses. 2020; 12(11):1208. https://doi.org/10.3390/v12111208

Chicago/Turabian Style

van Bockel, David, C. Mee Ling Munier, Stuart Turville, Steven G. Badman, Gregory Walker, Alberto Ospina Stella, Anupriya Aggarwal, Malinna Yeang, Anna Condylios, Anthony D. Kelleher, Tanya L. Applegate, Andrew Vallely, David Whiley, William Rawlinson, Phillip Cunningham, John Kaldor, and Rebecca Guy. 2020. "Evaluation of Commercially Available Viral Transport Medium (VTM) for SARS-CoV-2 Inactivation and Use in Point-of-Care (POC) Testing" Viruses 12, no. 11: 1208. https://doi.org/10.3390/v12111208

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