This presentation will focus on strategies for the design and validation of robust assays for the detection of SARS-CoV-2, including nucleic acid extraction, multiplexed qPCR assays, and interpretive software solutions. We will also present on strategies and methods for surveillance, strain identification, and detection of key mutations that result in new and more infectious strains. Viral mutations can result in variants that are not detected, escape immune responses mounted by vaccines, and also generate drug resistance. RNA viruses have a higher degree of variance and are prone to mutate in response to vaccines and antiviral drugs. Constant surveillance and detection of mutations and variant strains is important to contain pandemics and to deploy new vaccines and antiviral drugs.
1. Learn how testing and detection is important to lower transmission rates and contain pandemics
2. Understand how mutations emerge
3. Learn about the effect of mutations on detection assays