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Virology and Immunology

Virology and Immunology holds a unique position in New Zealand medical laboratories having effectively combined diagnostic virology and immunology into one integrated discipline.

Our diagnostic range includes immunochemistry, allergy testing, viral isolation and the serologic diagnosis of infectious and autoimmune diseases. Molecular-based techniques are a particularly successful component of our diagnostic work, with application both in the diagnosis of viral diseases and in the monitoring of infected patients undergoing treatment.

Our department is well supplied with modern processing equipment and work practices and test systems are constantly under review to ensure prompt and efficient delivery of test results. Virology and immunology is also well supported by highly qualified and experienced clinical and technical staff.

For in-depth information regarding offered tests, please refer to the on-line laboratory test guide.

Key Contacts

The unit assists in the diagnosis of a comprehensive range of autoimmune and infectious diseases. Batch testing is the usual format, although immediate analyses are available for a limited number of assays. Scope of methodology for antibody detection includes EIA, IFA, WB, LIA, CFT, Luminex, Chemiluminescence and Agglutination performed using manual, semi- or fully automated techniques.

Key contacts

Section Leader Paul Austin

Immunochemistry is comprised of Plasma Protein Assays and Specific IgE testing for Allergy. Skin Prick and Intradermal testing for possible allergic reactions to foods, inhalants, Bee and Wasp venoms, anaesthetics and antibiotics are performed along with detection of Total and Specific IgE Antibodies within the lab. Plasma Proteins are detected by Turbidimetry, Electrophoresis, Immunofixation and Isoelectric Focusing and aid in the diagnosis of Multiple Myeloma, Multiple Sclerosis, Carbohydrate Deficient Glycoprotein Disorders, Hereditary Angioedema and many other conditions.

Key contacts

Section Leader Shaleen Shah

Our unit is supported by state-of-the-art technology for viral and some Bacterial DNA/RNA testing including Viral Loads and Drug Resistance. Rapid, sensitive and specific identification of medically important viral infections is now core business for our DNA section. Many of our patients are heavily immunosuppressed and our assays reflect the needs of this special group.

Key contacts

Section Leader Fahimeh Rahnama