Quantitative real-time PCR has become the standard for clinical quantitation of infectious agents such as HIV, herpesviruses, West-Nile virus and others. It is used extensively in basic research everywhere. It is currently the method of choice to confirm microarray data or data obtained from quantitative deep sequencing experiments. We developed real-time QPCR arrays for human viruses, for targeted profiling of cell signaling pathways such as NFkappaB target genes and for human microRNAs. The PI's group has become the real-time QPCR core facility for the UNC microbiology community and the NCI-designated Lineberger comprehensive cancer center (LCCC). The dedicated real-time QPCR core is located in the Department of Microbiology and unlike other units operates under BSL-2 containment to be able to work with infectious agents and infectious samples, including those that require worker immunization and/or federal clearance. The core consists of a Agilent Bioanalyzer for QC of input RNA and post QPCR analysis, and Tecan general pipetting robot and integrated LC480 QPCR instrument. This allows us to load 384-well plates with 3 ?mu?l reaction volume and to run the QPCR instrument fully automated for 24 hours a day. Our main reason for choosing a plate-based system compared to e.g. nanofluidics or microarray systems, was that even a 384-well plate allow post-PCR processing, which present nanofluidics devices do not. In addition to the quantitative data of each experiment, the physical product is available for downstream applications such as QC, sequencing or cloning. In sum, we have a published track record in the development, use and data analysis of targeted real-time QPCR arrays;we will serve as a core for the PPG;we the necessary infrastructure in place already, such that only operating costs and personal need to be supported.

Public Health Relevance

Molecular biology and cancer research move towards high throughput experimental designs. The core will enable academic research to conduct quantitative measurements of gene expression and human viruses with unprecedented accuracy and a throughput that was previously only available in industrial settings.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Cancer Institute (NCI)
Research Program Projects (P01)
Project #
Application #
Study Section
Special Emphasis Panel (ZCA1-RPRB-0 (M1))
Project Start
Project End
Budget Start
Budget End
Support Year
Fiscal Year
Total Cost
Indirect Cost
University of North Carolina Chapel Hill
Chapel Hill
United States
Zip Code
Host, Kurtis M; Horner, Marie-Josephe; van der Gronde, Toon et al. (2017) Kaposi's sarcoma in Malawi: a continued problem for HIV-positive and HIV-negative individuals. AIDS 31:318-319
Westmoreland, Katherine D; Montgomery, Nathan D; Stanley, Christopher C et al. (2017) Plasma Epstein-Barr virus DNA for pediatric Burkitt lymphoma diagnosis, prognosis and response assessment in Malawi. Int J Cancer 140:2509-2516
Ma, Zhe; Hopcraft, Sharon E; Yang, Fan et al. (2017) NLRX1 negatively modulates type I IFN to facilitate KSHV reactivation from latency. PLoS Pathog 13:e1006350
Dittmer, Dirk P; Krown, Susan E; Mitsuyasu, Ronald (2017) Exclusion of Kaposi Sarcoma From Analysis of Cancer Burden. JAMA Oncol 3:1429
Westmoreland, Katherine D; Stanley, Christopher C; Montgomery, Nathan D et al. (2017) Hodgkin lymphoma, HIV, and Epstein-Barr virus in Malawi: Longitudinal results from the Kamuzu Central Hospital Lymphoma study. Pediatr Blood Cancer 64:
Schifano, Jason M; Corcoran, Kathleen; Kelkar, Hemant et al. (2017) Expression of the Antisense-to-Latency Transcript Long Noncoding RNA in Kaposi's Sarcoma-Associated Herpesvirus. J Virol 91:
Lee, Jennifer S; Cole, Stephen R; Richardson, David B et al. (2017) Incomplete viral suppression and mortality in HIV patients after antiretroviral therapy initiation. AIDS 31:1989-1997
Bermek, Oya; Weller, Sandra K; Griffith, Jack D (2017) The UL8 subunit of the helicase-primase complex of herpes simplex virus promotes DNA annealing and has a high affinity for replication forks. J Biol Chem 292:15611-15621
Raab-Traub, Nancy; Dittmer, Dirk P (2017) Viral effects on the content and function of extracellular vesicles. Nat Rev Microbiol 15:559-572
Dyson, Ossie F; Pagano, Joseph S; Whitehurst, Christopher B (2017) The Translesion Polymerase Pol ? Is Required for Efficient Epstein-Barr Virus Infectivity and Is Regulated by the Viral Deubiquitinating Enzyme BPLF1. J Virol 91:

Showing the most recent 10 out of 303 publications