New Retrovirus Screening Test Launched by Roche

Roche has launched a diagnostic assay designed to identify Human T-lymphotropic virus I/II (HTLV-I/II) in donated blood or routine samples.

Roche has launched a diagnostic assay designed to identify Human T-lymphotropic virus I/II (HTLV-I/II) in donated blood or routine samples.

“Globally there are around 20 million people infected with HTLV-I/II, many of whom are unknown carriers. If the virus is undetected in donors, the risk of spreading the infection increases,” stated Roland

Diggelmann, chief operating officer of Roche’s diagnostics division. “Roche is uniquely positioned to help blood centers improve their testing efficiency, based on our broad assay portfolio and integrated molecular and serology laboratory solutions.”

The Elecsys HTLV-I/II immunoassay lowers the odds of missing early or chronic HTLV infections, reducing transmission risk and improving blood safety. Health care professionals can run a single test within 18 minutes, ensuring safe and timely supply of blood products.

HTLV-I/II are retroviruses that can be transferred through breastfeeding, sexual intercourse, or sharing contaminated needles. HTLV-I has been linked to life-threatening adult T-cell leukemia/lymphoma, as well as associated myelopathy/tropical spastic paraparesis.

There is currently no treatment to eliminate HTLV from the body.