American virologist at Columbia University have developed a unique method of detecting viruses in humans and animals. It allows you to discover one of the many known viruses on a single blood sample.
Usually, the doctor makes a suggestion which virus caused the symptoms of a patient. Based on this hypothesis, a patient makes a blood test. But not always all doctor assumptions are correct, and then establishingan accurate diagnosis can be very difficult. As an example, one of the authors, Ian Lipkin leads the recent case of a patient who, after a bone marrow transplant his blood vessels got inflamed. Doctors could not put his accurate diagnosis, and Lipkin suggested that patient struck by a new type of virus. But after they checked the blood sample with the new technology, it has shown that patient is infected with dengue virus. It turned out, that the day before the patient went to Vietnam, where he was infected. But doctors treating him hadn't thought of checking his blood for that virus.
The new system is called VirCapSeq-VERT is a tool, that can test for all known viruses that infect humans. Detection of viruses occurs by comparing the blood sample with a library of viruses. The result is a genome of virus present in the blood at any amount.
The system may analyze the data from several patients simultaneously. Potentially, it is able to detect the mutation of viruses and new viruses.