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Pathologist: PCR tests set bar in COVID testing

 

December 17, 2020

Dr. John Hoyt, medical director at Northwest Pathology in Bellingham, explained the science behind PCR (Polymerase Chain Reaction) tests and how the molecular diagnostic tests are the gold standard in COVID-19 testing at the COVID-19 community update on Dec. 11.

According to Hoyt, the RNA in test samples is converted into DNA and placed into a sample well. It then goes through cycles of heating and cooling to amplify the sample. As it expands, probes that were placed on the sample also begin to enlarge, said Hoyt. If the sample is infected with COVID-19, those probes will attach to sequenc...



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