Influenza viruses A and B, members of the orthomyxovirus family, occur during cold weather seasons and are associated with large outbreaks of one circulating type. Influenza viruses cause abrupt acute febrile respiratory illnesses and are associated with such respiratory syndromes as pharyngitis, laryngitis, croup, bronchitis/ tracheobronchitis, bronchiolitis, influenza, and pneumonia. For the young and old, influenza infections can be extremely hazardous since complications of compromised pulmonary or cardiac function may result. Additionally, Reyes syndrome, characterized by noninflammatory encephalopathy and fatty infiltration of the liver, has been closely associated with influenza virus infections. Influenza A epidemics generally occur 2 out of every 3 years, while influenza B epidemics are encountered less often; on the average every 3 to 5 years. Isolation in primary monkey kidney (PMK), A549 lung carcinoma, LLCMK2, BGM or Madin-Darby canine kidney (MDCK) cell lines as well as embryonated hens eggs, constitutes the classical method for diagnosis of influenza viruses. While direct detection of influenza has shown promise in shortening the time required for diagnosis, isolation/confirmation remains the diagnostic method of choice at the present time. Direct antigen detection followed by isolation and confirmation would thus be the ideal method for diagnosis of influenza infections.
Please refer to Viral Respiratory Diseases for information on the VRK kit.
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