The National Institute of Public Health
Šrobárova 49/48
100 00, Praha 10

Phone: 00420 26708 1111
E-mail: podatelna@szu_cz

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National Reference Laboratory for Mumps, Measles, Rubella, and Parvovirus B19

The NRL is accredited to ČSN EN ISO/IEC 17025 as a test laboratory and to ČSN EN ISO 15189 as a public health laboratory by the Czech Accreditation Institute.

Head: Radomíra Limberková, M.D.

  • is internationally certified to the EQAS Instand in parvovirus B19 DNA detection a serological detection of specific IgG and IgM antibodies to measles, mumps, rubella (MMR) and parvovirus B19;
  • is internationally accredited as a WHO national reference laboratory for measles and rubella;
  • provides services to a wide variety of public health and health care professionals, as it follows from the status of NRL (see the Agreement on the establishment of NRL for MMR of December 2, 1998) and from the Guidelines on the investigation of pregnant women coming into contact with rubella or infected with rubella - Suppl. No.1, HEM-372.6 - 12.10.1972, Ministry of Health of the Czech Republic);
  • provides services to the Public Health Agency (pursuant to Act No. 471/2005 on public health protection);
  • participates in the MMR surveillance program in the Czech Republic (AHEM, No. 6/2006 Praha);
  • cooperates in measles elimination surveillance in the Czech Republic (HEM-370-  3.6.2002/15612 of 3.6.2002);
  • performs confirmatory MMR testing in accordance with the regulations of the Ministry of Health of the Czech Republic (Regulation No. 473/2008 of the Ministry of Health of the Czech Republic of 17 December 2008 on the epidemiological surveillance system for selected infections as amended by Regulation No. 275/2010);
  • stores reference specimens;
  • cooperates in the preparation of standard testing procedures for virology and algorithms;
  • selects the optimal diagnostic procedures;
  • cooperates in the assessment of MMR vaccines for immunogenicity and in the adoption of vaccination strategy;
  • provides professional training in the conventional and modern laboratory procedures to the staff of virology laboratories;
  • provides pregraduate and postgraduate training and education in the area of teratogenic viruses;
  • performs diagnostic testing of MMR and parvovirus B19 for health care settings:
  1. diagnosis in pregnant women with or exposed to exanthematous disease, serological testing of children with congenital defects;
  2. confirmatory serological testing of suspected clinical cases of MMR and parvovirosis B19;
  3. immunity testing for MMR and parvovirosis B19 (even on request, i.e. to be charged for)
  4. detection of  the parvovirus B19 DNA in  patients with haematological disorders, in immunocompromised and immunodeficient patients and particularly in biopsy specimens from patients with cardiomyopathy.

The group has been involved in reference activities including, among others, diagnostic, confirmatory and specialized testing, provides consulting on infections caused by respiratory viruses (A/B influenza virus including epidemiologically important subtypes, respiratory syncitial virus, human metapneumovirus, coronaviruses, adenoviruses, parainfluenza viruses and Mycoplasma penumoniae), Herpes viruses (varicella zoster virus, Epstein-Barr virus, cytomegalovirus, Herpes simplex virus 1 and 2, HHV6, and HHV8), enteroviruses (polioviruses and other enteroviruses) and last but not least viruses causing exanthematous diseases (morbillivirus, rubella virus, parvovirus B19, and mumps virus). All NRLs have been involved in the external quality assessment schemes (EQAS) for testing proficiency of field laboratories. The proficiency testing covers mainly the serology, but also molecular biological diagnosis and virus isolation. The EQAS samples are provided by the World Health Organization, European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC), other leading institutes (e.g. the Robert Koch Institute), or commercial organizations. Research activities focus on molecular biological diagnostic procedures and characterization of influenza virus in relation to severity of disease.

The NRLs of this Department participate in the European WHO (FluNet. EuroFlu) and ECDC surveillance networks (TESSy).