Zika virus is a mosquito-born flavivirus first discovered in Uganda in 1947. Although the illness caused by the virus is typically mild, the Zika virus infection can cause serious birth defects during pregnancy. If a pregnant woman becomes infected, it can be passed on to her fetus, where the infection can cause microcephaly, Guillain-Barré syndrome, and other severe brain defects.
Symptoms, which include fever, rash, and joint or muscle pain, may surface for less than a week. Because the symptoms are relatively mild, the infection is easily misdiagnosed or even ignored, further hindering the ability to curb an outbreak of the Zika virus. As mentioned, the greatest danger in this is the exposure to the unborn child.
There is no vaccine for the infection, and early diagnosis has been an important focus in limiting its spread. As such, there is an increasing demand for highly purified, concentrated Zika virus NS1 antigen for use in diagnostic assays. NS1 contains more species-specific epitopes than envelope proteins, making it a more desirable choice for detecting IgG and IgM antibodies. The Zika virus NS1 antigen is perfectly suitable for use in ELISA and lateral flow assays.
LKT Labs now offers purified, lyophilized Zika virus NS1 antigen for use in diagnostic and research applications. The antigen is a recombinant protein expressed in E.coli, with a purity specification of greater than 90% by SDS-PAGE. All flavivirus NS1 genes share a high degree of homology, encoding a 352-amino-acid polypeptide that has a molecular weight of 50 kDa. Suitable for use in ELISA test. Recommended concentration is 2.5 µg/mL for IgG.