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Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) is a common pathogen causing mostly cold-like symptoms, but in very young infants and elderly individuals it can lead to severe disease and even death. There are currently promising developments both in vaccine development and in therapeutics that are expected to be approved soon. To get an impression within European countries of the laboratory diagnostics and surveillance activities, in anticipation of these developments, we queried the members of the European Respiratory Syncytial Virus Laboratory Network (RSV-LabNet, under the umbrella of the PROMISE project) via an online survey. The answers from the consortium members showed scattered monitoring and the application of a broad array of techniques in the laboratories. A majority of the members expressed strong interest in harmonization and collaboration for setting up surveillance programs and the need for sharing laboratory protocols. The additional value of RSV whole-genome sequencing is broadly appreciated, but implementation requires further development and closer collaboration. The RSV-LabNet can have an important responsibility in establishing contacts and exchange of expertise and providing a platform for communication to advance diagnostics, preparedness, and surveillance.

Original publication




Conference paper

Publication Date





S34 - S39