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Diagnosis of Tamiflu-Resistant Influenza Virus in Human Nasal Fluid and Saliva using Surface-enhanced Raman Scattering

Influenza viruses cause respiratory infection, spread through respiratory secretions and are shed into the nasal secretion and saliva specimens. Therefore, nasal fluid and saliva are effective clinical samples for the diagnosis of influenza virus-infected patients. Although several methods have been developed to detect various types of influenza viruses, approaches for detecting mutant influenza viruses in clinical samples are rarely reported. Herein, we report for the first time a surface-enhanced Raman scattering (SERS)-based sensing platform for oseltamivir-resistant pandemic H1N1 (pH1N1) virus detection in human nasal fluid and saliva. By combining SERS-active urchin Au nanoparticles and oseltamivir hexylthiol, an excellent receptor for the pH1N1/H275Y mutant virus, we detected the pH1N1/H275Y virus specifically and sensitively in human saliva and nasal fluid samples. Considering that the current influenza virus infection testing methods do not provide information on the antiviral drug resistance of the virus, the proposed SERS-based diagnostic test for the oseltamivir-resistant virus will inform clinical decisions about the treatment of influenza virus infections, avoiding the unnecessary prescription of ineffective drugs and greatly improving therapy.

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