Noted American Pathologist Devises Efficient and Most Accurate Means for Detecting and Confirming Ebola Virus at Site of Outbreak

Dr. Sin Hang Lee of Milford Molecular Diagnostics advised the world’s Ebola experts how to implement the EU standard in West Africa at recent Paris conference

HARTFORD, Conn.--()--Sin Hang Lee, MD, a noted pathologist from Milford, Conn., informed the international experts gathering at Pasteur Institute in Paris for a Targeting Ebola meeting on May 28-29, 2015, that he has developed a nested RT-PCR method to detect Ebola virus nucleic acid at any site of outbreak. The non-infectious Ebola virus nucleic acid PCR amplicon can be transported immediately at ambient temperature to a regional laboratory for sequencing confirmation.

“Bring Sanger Sequencing to the Site of Ebola Outbreak”

“Swifter, more efficient and accurate virus testing confirmation will lead to faster patient treatment and isolation at the site of outbreak,” Dr. Lee said.

Detection of Ebola virus nucleic acid in a clinical specimen and confirmation by sequencing…” are the laboratory criteria for reporting Ebola virus disease in the EU, according to the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control

Dr. Lee’s scientific slide presentation entitled, “Bring Sanger Sequencing to the Site of Ebola Outbreak” is available for public viewing and can be uploaded at ( The nested PCR technology raises the current detection sensitivity by tenfold, and using DNA sequencing validation will confirm the molecular diagnosis of Ebola beyond a reasonable doubt, Dr. Lee said.

“False negative Ebola tests have been reported sporadically after patients have died and the clinical specimens were re-tested. False positive test results are often overlooked,” Dr. Lee explained, “because, if malaria patients were isolated in the same confinement with Ebola patients, the malaria patients might eventually become truly Ebola-positive.”

Dr. Lee was invited to speak as a result of his published papers in developing DNA sequencing tests for Lyme disease and for HPV genotyping at Milford Hospital in Connecticut. He used the Zaire Ebolavirus RNA generously supplied by BEI Resources affiliated with the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases to optimize a ready-to-use RT-PCR reagent mix which does not depend on refrigeration and generates high-quality nested PCR products to be used as the template for direct Sanger sequencing.

Dr. Lee is the director of Milford Molecular Diagnostics, specializing in molecular diagnosis of Lyme and related borrelioses

Ebola, Dengue fever and Lyme disease are the three infectious diseases with growing economic cost to the world, according to a recent National Science Foundation report

“Accurate diagnosis of these diseases at the early stage of infection is essential for timely and appropriate intervention to minimize subsequent undesirable consequences,” said Dr. Lee.


For Milford Molecular Diagnostics
Kevin Moore, 203-788-8497


Release Summary

Noted American Pathologist Devises Efficient and Most Accurate Means for Detecting and Confirming Ebola Virus at Site of Outbreak

Milford Molecular Diagnostics