External Quality Assessment for Zika Virus Molecular Diagnostic Testing, Brazil

Emerg Infect Dis. 2018 May;24(5):888-892. doi: 10.3201/eid2405.171747. Epub 2018 May 17.


We conducted an external quality assessment of Zika virus molecular diagnostic tests in Brazil using a new Zika virus standard. Of 15 laboratories, 73% showed limited sensitivity and specificity. Viral load estimates varied significantly. Continuous quality assurance is needed to adequately estimate risk for Zika virus-associated disease and determine patient care.

Keywords: Americas; Brazil; Zika virus; diagnostics; real-time RT-PCR; surveillance; vector-borne infections; viruses.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Brazil
  • Humans
  • Laboratories / standards*
  • Molecular Diagnostic Techniques / standards*
  • Quality Control
  • RNA, Viral / isolation & purification*
  • Sensitivity and Specificity
  • Viral Load
  • Zika Virus / isolation & purification*


  • RNA, Viral