The first infectious disease application of M-PCR was for the detection of HPV using either degenerate primers or consensus primers. Gregoire et al. (1989) used degenerate primers containing deoxyinosine at the variable base locations and showed that these consensus primers could detect all the HPV genotypes tested. Manos et al. (1989) also used degenerate primers, targeted to the LI gene instead of the El gene used by Gregoire et al., to detect several HPV genotypes recovered from the cervix. More recently, Vandervelde et al. (1992) used six pairs of HPV primers targeted to the E7 region to detect dysplastic changes in cervix tissue samples from Belgian women. Jullian et al. (1993) used HPV 16- and HPV 18-specific primers in an M-PCR assay to detect HPV in cervix tissue samples of women with normal cytology. Human T-lymphotropic virus (HTLV) types I and II have been detected in peripheral blood using type I- and type II-specific primers for three different genes (env, pol, and tax) in an M-PCR assay described by Wattel et al. (1992). Two different bloodborne viruses, human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) and hepatitis C virus (HCV), have been detected by M-PCR using primers for the HIV-1 gag region and the cloned C-100 NS-3/4 region of HCV, respectively (Nedjar et al., 1991). Cytomegalovirus (CMV) and Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) have been detected in preserved paraffin sections of lung tissue from immunocompromised patients (Burgart et al., 1992); more recently, M-PCR has been used to test paraffin-embedded small bowel tissues from patients with celiac disease for adenovirus type 12, CMV, and herpes simplex virus (HSV) (Vesey et al., 1993). Our laboratory has developed an M-PCR assay for the detection of Chlamydia trachomatis and Neisseria gonorrhoeae in genitourinary specimens collected from men with urethritis (Mahony et al., 1993b). Table 1 summarizes the viruses and primers used in selected studies.
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