New in-house PCR Test - Cytomegalovirus, Varicella Zoster, Herpes Simplex Virus

Published on : 28 August 2017

We are glad to announce that as part of our continuous efforts to expand our in-house menu, we have recently launched several new tests performed at our Molecular Pathology Centre of Excellence, located at the NRL's laboratory in ICAD, Abu Dhabi.

Please see more info below:  

Order Code

Order Code Name

CPT Code

Specimen type


Specimen container



Cytomegalovirus Qualitative, PCR


EDTA Blood (Plasma), Urine, Ocular Humor

Minimum: 0.6- 1 ml

Sterile Container


(2-8 C)/ except for plasma to be frozen ,Plasma must be separated from cells within 24 hours


Varicella Zoster Virus Qualitative, PCR


CSF, UTM Swab, Ocular Humor

Minimum: 0.6- 1 ml;

One UTM swab

Sterile Container;

UTM swab


(2-8 C)


Herpes Simplex Virus 1 & 2 Qualitative, PCR

87529 x 2

CSF, Aptima Vaginal Swab, Ocular Humor

Minimum: 0.6- 1 ml;

One Aptima Vaginal Swab

Sterile Container;

Aptima Vaginal Swab


(2-8 C)

Specimen stability: Refrigerated (2-8 C) for 7 days

TAT days: 5-7 days

Clinical Significance

Herpes simplex virus (HSV)

Herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1) and type 2 (HSV-2) are large double-stranded DNA viruses. HSV-1 and HSV-2 share a similar genome structure, with 40% of sequence homologies and 83% homology of their protein-coding regions. Genital herpes is a chronic, life-long viral infection. Two types of HSV have been identified as causing genital herpes: HSV-1 and HSV-2. Most persons infected with HSV-2 have not been diagnosed with genital herpes. Many such persons have mild or unrecognized infections but shed virus intermittently in the genital tract. As a result, the majority of genital herpes infections are transmitted by persons unaware that they have the infection or who are asymptomatic when transmission occurs.

The primary difference between the two viral types is in where they typically establish latency in the body- their "site of preference." HSV-1 usually establishes latency in the trigeminal ganglion, a collection of nerve cells near the ear. From there, it tends to recur on the lower lip or face. HSV-2 usually sets up residence in the sacral ganglion at the base of the spine. From there, it recurs in the genital area. Even this difference is not absolute either type can reside in either or both parts of the body and infect oral and/or genital areas. Unfortunately, many people aren't aware of this, which contributes both to the spread of type 1 and to the misperception that the two types are fundamentally different.

Varicella zoster virus (VZV)

Herpes zoster (HZ) is a clinical manifestation of the reactivation of the varicella zoster virus (VZV). HZ of the male genital area is a rarely reported condition. Individual cases of recognized vulval and anogenital infection with VZV have been described in adults, and cases of genital infection with this agent in children have also been reported. VZV may be an under-reported cause of viral genital infections, especially in patients 16~50 years of age. VZV is present worldwide and is highly infectious. Primary infection leads to acute varicella or “chickenpox”, usually from exposure either through direct contact with a skin lesion or through airborne spread from respiratory droplets. After initial infection, VZV establishes lifelong latency in cranial nerve and dorsal root ganglia, and can reactivate years to decades later as herpes zoster (HZ) or “shingles”. More than 90% of adults in the United States acquired the disease in childhood, while the majority of children and young adults have been vaccinated with the live virus vaccine.

Cytomegalovirus (CMV)

Cytomegalovirus (CMV) can cause life-threatening disease in immunocompromised patients, such as those with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). Over half of adults by age 40 have been infected with CMV. Once CMV is in a person's body, it stays there for life and can reactivate. A person can also be reinfected with a different strain (variety) of the virus. Most people infected with CMV show no signs or symptoms. That’s because a healthy person's immune system usually keeps the virus from causing illness. However, CMV infection can cause serious health problems for people with weakened immune systems, as well as babies infected with the virus before they are born (congenital CMV). People with weakened immune systems who get CMV can have more serious symptoms affecting the eyes, lungs, liver, esophagus, stomach, and intestines. Babies born with CMV can have brain, liver, spleen, lung, and growth problems. Hearing loss is the most common health problem in babies born with congenital CMV infection, which may be detected soon after birth or may develop later in childhood.

We will be happy to answer any questions that you might have.

NRL Technical Support     

Email :

Tel : 800-NRL (675)