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Saliva is effective in screening for CMV infection in newborns, says NIH-funded research
Date:6/1/2011

he saliva rapid culture. Follow-up testing revealed that three of these samples were indeed positive, leading the researchers to conclude that PCR may be a superior method to rapid culture for CMV screening. As for the remaining 13 samples, the researchers noted that CMV may have been present in the mother's breast milk or secretions in the birth canal, which showed up in the baby's mouth swab. For this reason, they suggest that all positive screenings be confirmed with follow-up testing within the first three weeks of age.

"We now know that we have a test with saliva that works," said Dr. Boppana. "The challenge is, unlike the dried blood spot, which is already used for newborn screening in hospitals across the country, we don't have a system in place for the collection of saliva. But we've shown that if you wanted to test a lot of babies for congenital CMV infection, it can be done."

The researchers are now looking to find out how much congenital CMV infection contributes to overall hearing loss at birth and between the ages of 3 1/2 to 4 years old. For this reason, infants who tested positive for CMV infection in the study are being enrolled in a follow-up program to monitor their hearing every six months until they are four years of age.


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Contact: Jennifer Wenger
jwenger@mail.nih.gov
301-496-7243
NIH/National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders
Source:Eurekalert

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