Real-Time RT-PCR Assay for Influenza B Lineage Characterization

Influenza B causes significant morbidity and mortality yearly around the world. There are two genetically and antigenically distinct lineages of influenza B that are known to co-circulate within the same influenza season. Currently, the trivalent influenza vaccine only has one influenza B lineage component. CDC researchers developed technology that detects and distinguishes the two major co-circulating antigenic lineages of influenza B viruses (B/Yamagata/16/88 (YAM) and B/Victoria/2/87 (VIC)) and provides accurate and timely surveillance data that are less prone to contamination than current methods. This technology relies on real-time RT-PCR and provides reproducible, high-throughput screening results for accurate and timely collection of surveillance and diagnostic information. The real-time RT-PCR assay takes just over an hour to cycle and can detect the presence of influenza viral RNA in respiratory specimens. The primers and probes used in the assays target hemagglutinin (HA) protein 1 RNA of currently circulating VIC-like and YAM-like influenza viruses. The assays can be adapted by public health facilities and laboratories.

Potential Commercial Applications: Competitive Advantages:
  • Influenza B diagnostic assay
  • Surveillance studies to distinguish between circulating influenza B subtypes
  • Highly specific and more sensitive than other influenza tests (e.g., rapid influenza diagnostic tests and immunofluorescence)
  • Distinguishes between two lineages of Influenza B that co-circulate during the flu season
  • Can yield results in just over an hour
  • Relies on RT-PCR technology that has become more common in public health facilities and laboratories worldwide
  • Reproducible and adaptable for high-throughput

Related Invention(s):


Stephen Lindstrom (CDC)  ➽ more inventions...

Kai-Hui Wu (CDC)  ➽ more inventions...

LaShondra Berman (CDC)  ➽ more inventions...

Christine Warnes (CDC)  ➽ more inventions...

Shannon Emery (CDC)  ➽ more inventions...

Intellectual Property:
US Pat: - issued -
US Application No. 62/398,204 filed on 2016-09-22

Collaboration Opportunity:

The CDC Technology Transfer Office (TTO) is seeking statements of capability or interest from parties interested in collaborative research to further develop, evaluate, or commercialize the Influenza B Characterization rRT-PCR assay. For collaboration opportunities, please contact CDC Technology Transfer Office (TTO) at or404-639-1330.

Licensing Contact:
Karen Surabian, J.D., M.B.A.
Phone: 301-594-9719

OTT Reference No: E-060-2016-0
Updated: Jun 22, 2018