Saliva-based PCR Tests for SARS-CoV-2 Detection

J Oral Sci. 2020;62(3):350-351. doi: 10.2334/josnusd.20-0267.


The outbreak of novel coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) has spread worldwide. Nasopharyngeal swabs are widely used in polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test to detect SARS-CoV-2. However, the collection of nasopharyngeal swabs has a series of drawbacks concerning exposure of healthcare staff, difficulty in collection, and discomfort of patients. Therefore, an alternative noninvasive sample for diagnostic of emerging viral diseases is required. The usefulness of saliva screening tests is compared to conventional swab tests in this report. The results suggest that saliva could be a reliable sample for detecting SARS-CoV-2.

Keywords: COVID-19; PCR; SARS-CoV-2; coronavirus; saliva.

MeSH terms

  • Betacoronavirus
  • Clinical Laboratory Techniques
  • Coronavirus Infections
  • Humans
  • Pandemics
  • Pneumonia, Viral
  • Polymerase Chain Reaction
  • SARS Virus*
  • Saliva

Supplementary concepts

  • COVID-19
  • severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2