Biologicals : journal of the International Association of Biological Standardization

Evaluation of infectivity and reverse transcriptase real-time polymerase chain reaction assays for detection of xenotropic murine leukemia virus used in virus clearance validation.

PMID 25997567


Infectivity and reverse transcriptase quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction (qRT-PCR) assays have been optimized and validated for xenotropic murine leukemia virus (X-MuLV) detection. We have evaluated the assays systematically with regard to specificity, linearity, lower limit of detection (LLOD), lower limit of quantification (LLOQ), and precision. Both assays are specific for X-MuLV detection, with a linear detection range of 0.6-5.6 log(10) TCID(50)/mL for the infectivity assay, and 1.4-6.5 log(10) particles/mL for the qRT-PCR assay. The LLOD and LLOQ of the infectivity and the qRT-PCR assays are determined as 0.5 and 1.0 log(10)/mL, and 1.4 and 2.2 log(10)/mL. The inter-assay repeatability of qRT-PCR assay (4.2% coefficient of variation [CV]) is higher than the infectivity assay (7.9% CV). We have shown that both assays are closely correlated (r = 0.85, P < 0.05, n = 22). The particle/infectivity ratio is determined as 66. Both assays were applied to evaluate virus removal using virus clearance samples of chromatographic and filtration processes. Here, we have demonstrated that the qRT-PCR assay is much faster in testing and is approximately 8-fold more sensitive than the infectivity assay. Therefore, the qRT-PCR assay can replace the infectivity assay in many cases, but both assays are complementary in elucidating the mechanism of virus inactivation and removal in virus clearance validation.