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A Highly Sensitive Diagnostic System for Detecting Dengue Viruses Using the Interaction between a Sulfated Sugar Chain and a Virion

We propose a novel method of detecting trace amounts of dengue virus (DENVs) from serum. Our method is based on the interaction between a sulfated sugar chain and a DENV surface glycoprotein. After capturing DENV with the sulfated sugar chain-immobilized gold nanoparticles (SGNPs), the resulting complex is precipitated and viral RNA content is measured using the reverse-transcription quantitative polymerase chain reaction SYBR Green I (RT-qPCR-Syb) method. Sugar chains that bind to DENVs were identified using the array-type sugar chain immobilized chip (Sugar Chip) and surface plasmon resonance (SPR) imaging. Heparin and low-molecular-weight dextran sulfate were identified as binding partners, and immobilized on gold nanoparticles to prepare 3 types of SGNPs. The capacity of these SGNPs to capture and concentrate trace amounts of DENVs was evaluated in vitro. The SGNP with greatest sensitivity was tested using clinical samples in Indonesia in 2013-2014. As a result, the novel method was able to detect low concentrations of DENVs using only 6 μL of serum, with similar sensitivity to that of a Qiagen RNA extraction kit using 140 μL of serum. In addition, this method allows for multiplex-like identification of serotypes of DENVs. This feature is important for good healthcare management of DENV infection in order to safely diagnose the dangerous, highly contagious disease quickly, with high sensitivity.

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