The Bloodborne Viruses Laboratory (BVL) focuses on clinical and public health laboratory activities related to human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and hepatitis C virus (HCV).  The BVL is involved in a wide range of testing, surveillance, and applied research activities. Laboratory services include:

  • Clinical Testing: Testing services include the Pediatric HIV Diagnostic Testing Service for perinatally exposed infants, referral testing for HIV rapid testing sites, HIV-2 nucleic acid testing and testing to resolve difficult cases.
  • Surveillance: The BVL collaborates with the NYSDOH Bureau of HIV/AIDS Epidemiology on HIV surveillance projects for New York State and serves as a testing laboratory for national HIV surveillance programs. 
  • Public Health Investigations: The BVL works closely with epidemiologists on outbreak investigations involving bloodborne viruses, particularly those involving healthcare facilities. The lab employs several viral genotyping and sequence analysis techniques to help identify the source of infections under investigation and assess the risk to the public.
  • Research: The BVL evaluates the performance of available diagnostic test methods and, where needs exist, the laboratory develops and validates new laboratory assays for HIV and HCV.  In addition, the BVL collaborates with public health scientists at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Association of Public Health Laboratories as well as investigators at academic institutions on an assortment of research projects.
  • Training/Education: The BVL welcomes graduate students from the University at Albany School of Public Health and Fellows from a variety of Fellowship Programs.  Opportunities include short-term rotations and longer-term applied research projects.  Research projects are typically focused on development and validation of molecular diagnostic assays and genotyping methods for HIV and hepatitis C virus.

CLIA# 33D2005937 | PFI# 8523

Program Updates

The Latest Frontier in Antibody Testing for COVID-19 Starts with a Simple Prick of the Finger

Did you know that you only need a few drops of dried blood from a pricked finger to test for COVID-19 antibodies? Indeed, not only does a drop of blood contain a multitude of different antibodies to viruses and other microbes, but Wadsworth Center scientists are able to measure an array of different types of antibodies and estimate how well they are able to fight off an infection.  Such technologies represent the interaction of clinical testing and research investigation that occur at the Center every day of the week.