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Real-time PCR-based SARS-CoV-2 detection in Canadian Laboratories

  • LeBlanc, Jason J.1, 2
  • Gubbay, Jonathan B.3, 4, 5
  • Li, Yan6
  • Needle, Robert7
  • Arneson, Sandra Radons6
  • Marcino, Dionne6
  • Charest, Hugues8
  • Desnoyers, Guillaume9
  • Dust, Kerry10
  • Fattouh, Ramzi11
  • Garceau, Richard9
  • German, Gregory12
  • Hatchette, Todd F1, 2
  • Kozak, Robert A.3, 13
  • Krajden, Mel14
  • Kuschak, Theodore6
  • Lang, Amanda L.S.15
  • Levett, Paul14
  • Mazzulli, Tony3, 16
  • McDonald, Ryan15
  • And 8 more
  • 1 Division of Microbiology, Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, Nova Scotia Health Authority (NSHA), Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada
  • 2 Departments of Pathology, Medicine, and Microbiology and Immunology, Dalhousie University, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada
  • 3 Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathobiology, Faculty of Medicine, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
  • 4 Public Health Ontario Laboratories, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
  • 5 Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
  • 6 National Microbiology Laboratory (NML), Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC), Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
  • 7 Public Health and Microbiology Laboratory, St. John’s, Newfoundland, Canada
  • 8 Laboratoire de santé publique du Québec/INSPQ, Sainte-Anne-de-Bellevue, Quebec, Canada
  • 9 Centre Hospitalier Universitaire Dr. Georges L. Dumont, Moncton, New-Brunswick, Canada
  • 10 Cadham Provincial Laboratory, Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
  • 11 Department of Laboratory Medicine, St. Michael’s Hospital, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
  • 12 Queen Elizabeth Hospital, Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island, Canada
  • 13 Sunnybrook Research Institute, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
  • 14 Public Health Laboratory, British Columbia Centre for Disease Control (BCCDC), Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
  • 15 Roy Romanow Provincial Laboratory (RRPL), Saskatchewan Health Authority (SHA), Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada
  • 16 Department of Microbiology, Mount Sinai Hospital, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
  • 17 St Joseph’s Healthcare, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
  • 18 Provincial Laboratory for Public Health (ProvLab), Calgary, Alberta, Canada
Published Article
Journal of Clinical Virology
Published by Elsevier B.V.
Publication Date
May 13, 2020
DOI: 10.1016/j.jcv.2020.104433
PMCID: PMC7219382
PubMed Central


With emergence of pandemic COVID-19, rapid and accurate diagnostic testing is essential. This study compared laboratory-developed tests (LDTs) used for the detection of SARS-CoV-2 in Canadian hospital and public health laboratories, and some commercially available real-time RT-PCR assays. Overall, analytical sensitivities were equivalent between LDTs and most commercially available methods.

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