Easy and inexpensive molecular detection of dengue, chikungunya and zika viruses in febrile patients




Dengue (DENV), chikungunya (CHIKV) and zika (ZIKV) are arthropod-borne viruses (arboviruses) sharing a common vector, the mosquito Aedes aegypti. At initial stages, patients infected with these viruses have similar clinical manifestations, however, the outcomes and clinical management of these diseases are different, for this reason early and accurate identification of the causative virus is necessary. This paper reports the development of a rapid and specific nested-PCR for detection of DENV, CHIKV and ZIKV infection in the same sample. A set of six outer primers targeting the C-preM, E1, and E gene respectively was used in a multiplex one-step RT-PCR assay, followed by the second round of amplification with specific inner primers for each virus. The specificity of the present assay was validated with positive and negative serum samples for viruses and supernatants of infected cells. The assay was tested using clinical samples from febrile patients. In these samples, we detected mono and dual infections and a case of triple co-infection DENV-CHIKV-ZIKV. This assay might be a useful and an inexpensive tool for detection of these infections in regions where these arboviruses co-circulate.

Palabras clave


Arbovirus, Chikungunya, Dengue, Nested PCR


Virus del Dengue
Reacción en Cadena de la Polimerasa