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External quality assessment scheme for influenza virus detection and culture for the Community Network of Reference Laboratories for Human Influenza in Europe 2010/2011

08 May 2012
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Abstract
This was the second rapid detection and culture EQA panel distributed by the Community Network of Reference Laboratories for Human Influenza in Europe (CNRL) since the European Influenza Surveillance Network (EISN) was established in 2008. The objectives of the exercise were to both provide participants with an independent mechanism to check performance and to provide information at the network level as to the capacity and capability for rapid detection by polymerase chain reaction (PCR), influenza virus culture and strain characterisation within a defined reporting timeframe. Thirty-four laboratories from 27 European countries participated in the exercise. Results indicated considerable strength in the network for molecular detection and (sub)typing of influenza viruses and that laboratories have successfully implemented detection methods for A(H1N1)pdm09 virus and increased capacity for subtyping influenza A viruses.
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