Pan-Piscine Orthoreovirus (PRV) Detection Using Reverse Transcription Quantitative PCR

Julie Zhao, Niccolò Vendramin, Argelia Cuenca, Mark Polinski, Laura M. Hawley, Kyle A. Garver*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

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Piscine orthoreovirus (PRV) infects farmed and wild salmon and trout species in North America, South America, Europe, and East Asia. PRV groups into three distinct genotypes (PRV-1, PRV-2, and PRV-3) that can vary in distribution, host specificity, and/or disease potential. Detection of the virus is currently restricted to genotype specific assays such that surveillance programs require the use of three assays to ensure universal detection of PRV. Consequently, herein, we developed, optimized, and validated a real-time reverse transcription quantitative PCR assay (RT-qPCR) that can detect all known PRV genotypes with high sensitivity and specificity. Targeting a conserved region at the 5′ terminus of the M2 segment, the pan-PRV assay reliably detected all PRV genotypes with as few as five copies of RNA. The assay exclusively amplifies PRV and does not cross-react with other salmonid viruses or salmonid host genomes and can be performed as either a one- or two-step RT-qPCR. The assay is highly reproducible and robust, showing 100% agreement in test results from an inter-laboratory comparison between two laboratories in two countries. Overall, as the assay provides a single test to achieve highly sensitive pan-specific PRV detection, it is suitable for research, diagnostic, and surveillance purposes.
Original languageEnglish
Article number1548
Issue number12
Number of pages12
Publication statusPublished - 2021


  • Piscine orthoreovirus (PRV)
  • Real time PCR
  • Genotypes
  • Validation
  • Sensitivity
  • Specificity
  • Reproducibility


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