SARS-CoV-2 Mutations Can Reduce Diagnostic Test Accuracy

David Wang, PhD and Bijal Parikh, MD, PhD have identified a mutation that reduces the ability of reverse transcriptase PCR (RT-PCR) to identify SARS-CoV-2. The research was recently published in the Journal of Clinical Microbiology. The efficacy and reliability of these assays are of paramount importance in both tracking and controlling the spread of the virus. If these diagnostic tests provide false positives it can delay the actions of public health officials to enact protective measures in areas that are seeing outbreaks, leading to more spread within a community. Click here to read the press release from the American Society for Microbiology.