Infectious-disease diagnostics

Infectious-disease diagnostics is the procedure by which the causative agent of an infectious disease is identified and often characterized. It can be based solely on clinical presentation or more rigorous diagnostic tests, such as culturing of the infectious agent, microscopy, biochemical screens and molecular methods.

Latest Research and Reviews

News and Comment

  • Comments and Opinion |

    The recent large outbreak of Ebola virus disease (EVD) in Western Africa resulted in greatly increased accumulation of human genotypic, phenotypic and clinical data, and improved our understanding of the spectrum of clinical manifestations. As a result, the WHO disease classification of EVD underwent major revision.

    • Jens H. Kuhn
    • , Takuya Adachi
    • , Neill K. J. Adhikari
    • , Jose R. Arribas
    • , Ibrahima Elhadj Bah
    • , Daniel G. Bausch
    • , Nahid Bhadelia
    • , Matthias Borchert
    • , Arne Broch Brantsæter
    • , David M. Brett-Major
    • , Timothy H. Burgess
    • , Daniel S. Chertow
    • , Christopher G. Chute
    • , Theodore J. Cieslak
    • , Robert Colebunders
    • , Ian Crozier
    • , Richard T. Davey
    • , Hilde de Clerck
    • , Rafael Delgado
    • , Laura Evans
    • , Mosoka Fallah
    • , William A. Fischer II
    • , Tom E. Fletcher
    • , Robert A. Fowler
    • , Thomas Grünewald
    • , Andy Hall
    • , Angela Hewlett
    • , Andy I. M. Hoepelman
    • , Catherine F. Houlihan
    • , Giuseppe Ippolito
    • , Shevin T. Jacob
    • , Michael Jacobs
    • , Robert Jakob
    • , Frederique A. Jacquerioz
    • , Laurent Kaiser
    • , Andre C. Kalil
    • , Rashidatu F. Kamara
    • , Jimmy Kapetshi
    • , Hans-Dieter Klenk
    • , Gary Kobinger
    • , Mark G. Kortepeter
    • , Colleen S. Kraft
    • , Thomas Kratz
    • , Henry S. Kyobe Bosa
    • , Marta Lado
    • , François Lamontagne
    • , H. Cliff Lane
    • , Leslie Lobel
    • , Julius Lutwama
    • , G. Marshall Lyon III
    • , Moses B. F. Massaquoi
    • , Thomas A. Massaquoi
    • , Aneesh K. Mehta
    • , Vital Mondonge Makuma
    • , Srinivas Murthy
    • , Tonny Seikikongo Musoke
    • , Jean-Jacques Muyembe-Tamfum
    • , Phiona Nakyeyune
    • , Carolina Nanclares
    • , Miriam Nanyunja
    • , Justus Nsio-Mbeta
    • , Tim O’Dempsey
    • , Janusz T. Pawęska
    • , Clarence J. Peters
    • , Peter Piot
    • , Christophe Rapp
    • , Bertrand Renaud
    • , Bruce Ribner
    • , Pardis C. Sabeti
    • , John S. Schieffelin
    • , Werner Slenczka
    • , Moses J. Soka
    • , Armand Sprecher
    • , James Strong
    • , Robert Swanepoel
    • , Timothy M. Uyeki
    • , Michel van Herp
    • , Pauline Vetter
    • , David A. Wohl
    • , Timo Wolf
    • , Anja Wolz
    • , Alie H. Wurie
    •  & Zabulon Yoti
  • News and Views |

    Rapid diagnostic tests capable of detecting any potential pathogen are needed to improve the efficacy of antimicrobial therapy and inform antimicrobial stewardship efforts. A new metagenomics-based test that detects microbial DNA in human blood can identify a diverse array of pathogens from any source in the body.

    • Justin O’Grady
    Nature Microbiology 4, 554-555
  • News and Views |

    Reassurance provided by pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) for HIV might lead to increased sexual risk-taking in men who have sex with men (MSM), potentially increasing the risk of transmitting other infections. A recent study has shown increased transmission of hepatitis C virus (HCV) in this population, suggesting a need for HCV screening.

    • Douglas S. Krakower
    •  & Kenneth H. Mayer
  • Editorial |

    Despite major advances in dissecting how pathogens cause disease and the development of treatments to combat infection, infectious diseases remain a major cause of death today. This month’s issue includes a special ‘Focus on Infectious Disease’, which highlights efforts to develop new ways to prevent, detect and treat infections.

  • Editorial |

    The release of the World Health Organization’s Essential Diagnostics List highlights that diagnostics need to be a fundamental part of any effective public health system and the development of rapid, reliable and reasonably priced tests will be critical for tailoring appropriate treatments against infectious diseases.