Viruses take lives. Early, accurate detection and differentiation is the first step to proper treatment.

The arrival of COVID-19 into the ecosystem changed the way we approach respiratory testing. Gone are the days of relying on a rapid test to diagnose an infection. PCR or molecular testing is now the gold standard. Its magnifying capacity allows laboratorians to detect the virus, even when there are minimal copies in the host.

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Shared symptoms, different viruses

Proper treatment begins with proper diagnosis. Because influenza and COVID-19 share symptoms, accurate testing is needed to distinguish one from the other. An Emergency Use Authorized (EUA) multiplex PCR test like this one is specifically designed to detect and differentiate between multiple respiratory viruses as the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic overlaps with respiratory virus seasons. The test uses an assay design with two SARS-CoV-2 targets to compensate for emerging variants and mutations and to help provide confidence in results.

Single test to detect and differentiate between COVID-19 and influenza

The TaqPath COVID-19, Flu A, Flu B Combo Kit is a single test that can detect and differentiate between COVID-19 and influenza, which present with similar clinical symptoms, whether the sample contains one or both viruses, as in the case of a co-infection.

The TaqPath kit is a multiplex assay. This means that the user can test for more than one virus in the same run using one patient sample. This comes in handy when the COVID-19 pandemic overlaps with virus season.

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Customer presentation: Clinical performance of the Applied Biosystems TaqPath COVID-19, Flu A, Flu B Combo Kit as compared to other multiplex RT-PCR tests

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Test and differentiate COVID-19, flu A, and flu B with one patient sample


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How do we tell these viruses apart?

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Solution workflow

Turnaround time from sample to interpreted results is approximately 3 hours. The required workflow consists of sample extraction and preparation, real-time RT-PCR genetic analysis, and automated translation of data into patient diagnosis.

Sample collection

Sample prep

Real-time PCR

Analyze and report

Nasopharyngeal swabs
Anterior nasal swabs

Thermo Scientific KingFisher Flex Purification System with Applied Biosystems MagMAX Viral/Pathogen II Nucleic Acid Isolation Kit
  • TaqPath COVID-19 Flu A, Flu B Combo Kit
  • Real-time PCR instruments:
    • 7500 Fast Dx Real-Time PCR System
    • QuantStudio 5 System (96-well, 0.2 mL)
    • QuantStudio 7 Flex Real-Time PCR System, 384-well

Applied Biosystems Pathogen Interpretive Software (v1.1.0)

Samples tested with the TaqPath kit are collected via nasopharyngeal (NP) swab (left) and anterior nasal swab (right).
Samples tested with the TaqPath kit are collected via nasopharyngeal (NP) swab (left) and anterior nasal swab (right).

This cost-effective test can be added to a testing menu and infrastructure in order to expand respiratory sample testing while maintaining low operational costs and workflow simplicity.

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Workflow and performance of the TaqPath COVID-19, Flu A, Flu B Combo Kit

Analysis and reporting

The Applied Biosystems Pathogen Interpretive Software (v1.1.0) is part of the required workflow and must be downloaded prior to instrumentation use.

You may download the software upon kit purchase. Labs following the authorized workflow are required to complete an eLearning course and pass an exam to download.

Follow the instructions below to obtain the software from your local support team:

  • Go to
  • Select “Instrument Service” as category
  • Enter product name or Cat. No. and select your country
  • Call the local number displayed on the screen
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Product details


  • SARS-CoV-2 (S gene and N gene)
  • Influenza A (matrix gene)
  • Influenza B (matrix gene)

Internal control

  • MS2 phage control

Authorized sample types

  • Nasopharyngeal (NP) swab
  • Anterior nasal (nasal) swab

Authorized sample preparation

Limit of detection (LOD)

  • SARS-CoV-2: 100 GCE/mL
  • Influenza A: 200–500 GCE/mL
  • Influenza B: 500–1,000 GCE/mL
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  • TaqPath COVID-19, Flu A, Flu B RT-PCR Assay Multiplex—multiplexed assays that contain primer and probe sets specific to two SARS-CoV-2 targets (S gene and N gene), one influenza A target, one influenza B target, and bacteriophage MS2
  • MS2 Phage Control—internal process control for nucleic acid extraction
  • TaqPath COVID-19, Flu A, Flu B Control—RNA control that contains targets specific to the SARS- CoV-2, influenza A, and influenza B genomic regions targeted by the assays
  • TaqPath Control Dilution Buffer
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Is this product approved in your country?

Find the approved Instructions for Use (IFU) for your country. (Note: Product availability varies by country.)

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Looking for additional respiratory viral targets?

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Thinking of bringing the TaqPath COVID-19, flu A, flu B kit to your lab?

For Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) Only. For prescription use only. For in vitro diagnostic use. Product availability varies by country.