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11. Result Interpretation & Virology Teaching

"DETECTED by ........" is a positive result

"Not detected by ........" is a negative result

This represents the detection or the absence of the presence of the pathogen or antibody for that pathogen by the testing platform.

Antibody is a large protein produced by the immune system, used to identify and neutralise specific pathogens including viruses. The presence of a specific antibody indicates infection in the past, it does not indicate current infection. Further testing is required to identify whether the patient is currently infected.

Antigen is a part of a viral protein, presence indicates current infection. HIV screening tests detect both antibody and antigen simultaneously and indicate current infection if detected.

Ribonucleic acid (RNA) is the genetic code of HCV and HIV detected by RT-PCR (the type of test which detects the presence of viral genes).

Deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) is the genetic code of HBV and parvovirus B19 detected by PCR (the type of test which detects the presence of viral genes).

Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) diagnostic test which multiplies the genetic code of the pathogen for detection. Detection indicates current infection.  

Architect: HIV antibody/antigen and HCV antibody tests for example are undertaken on the Architect in the WoSSVC.

WoSSVC photo_Architect i2000SR.jpg

Abbott Architect testing platform at the WoSSVC

HIV antibody/antigen results are reported as:

HIV antibody/antigen: Not detected by Architect


HIV antibody/antigen: DETECTED by Architect

Liaison: Measles virus IgG and Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) IgM tests for example, are undertaken on the Liaison in the WoSSVC.

WoSSVC photo_Liaison XL.jpg

Diasorin Liaison XL testing platform at the WoSSVC

Measles virus IgG test results are reported as:

Measles virus IgG: Not detected by Liaison


Measles virus IgG: DETECTED by Liaison


If you would like to arrange virology teaching for your department please contact:

Dr Eleri Wilson-Davies      

Tel: 38736 (0141 201 8736)

[email protected] / [email protected]


RCPath Key Performance Indicators:

KPI 2.2 Undergraduate, postgraduate and primary care teaching

The WoSSVC provides a biannual two week training course in medical virology for Foundation Year 2 doctors.

Microbiology/Infectious Diseases specialty registrars spend a four month attachment in the laboratory in their first year of training in preparation for the FRCPath part 1.

Consultants, virology registrars and virology/infectious diseases registrars provide teaching (in the form of lectures and case-based learning) for the University of Glasgow medical degree course.

Consultants provide lectures for the University of Glasgow MSc in Infection Biology and the Level-4 Honours Option in Molecular Virology.

The WoSSVC participates in the HIV complex cases teleconference, which discuss HIV antiviral resistance.