A rapid method for infectivity titration of Andes hantavirus using flow cytometry
Authors: Barriga GP, Martínez-Valdebenito C, Galeno H, Ferrés M, Lozach PY, Tischler ND
CellNetworks People: Lozach Pierre-Yves
Journal: J Virol Methods. 2013 Nov;193(2):291-4. doi: 10.1016/j.jviromet.2013.06.022. Epub 2013 Jun 24.

The focus assay is currently the most commonly used technique for hantavirus titer determination. This method requires an incubation time of between 5 and 11 days to allow the appearance of foci after several rounds of viral infection. The following work presents a rapid Andes virus (ANDV) titration assay, based on viral nucleocapsid protein (N) detection in infected cells by flow cytometry. To this end, an anti-N monoclonal antibody was used that was developed and characterized previously. ANDV N could be detected as early as 6 h post-infection, while viral release was not observed until 24-48 h post-infection. Given that ANDV detection was performed during its first round of infection, a time reduction for titer determination was possible and provided results in only two days. The viral titer was calculated from the percentage of N positive cells and agreed with focus assay titers. Furthermore, the assay was applied to quantify the inhibition of ANDV cell entry by patient sera and by preventing endosome acidification. This novel hantavirus titration assay is a highly quantitative and sensitive tool that facilitates infectivity titration of virus stocks, rapid screening for antiviral drugs, and may be further used to detect and quantify infectious virus in human samples.