HCP Live
Contagion LiveCGT LiveNeurology LiveHCP LiveOncology LiveContemporary PediatricsContemporary OBGYNEndocrinology NetworkPractical CardiologyRheumatology Netowrk

Monkeypox Update: Swabs, Testing, and Vaccines

Federal government agencies offer a best practices approach for testing, announce more laboratories are testing for the virus and provide insights on vaccines and therapies.


As of this past Friday, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported there were 1814 monkeypox/orthopoxvirus cases in the United States.

And on the same day, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) advised that clinicians testing for monkeypox should use swabs taken directly from the lesion— specifically either the rash or growth. The federal agency warned that samples not taken from a lesion may lead to false test results.

FDA stated in its safety communication that it was not aware of clinical data supporting the use of other sample types, such as blood or saliva, for monkeypox testing.

For clinicians, FDA also warned that for those patients who were tested for the monkeypox virus using something beyond a swab on the lesion and suspect an inaccurate result, then they should consider retesting the patient in the aforementioned method.

Over the course of the last several days, CDC has announced the addition of several laboratories who are now able to test for monkeypox. These companies include Mayo Clinic Laboratories, Labcorp, Sonic Healthcare, Quest, and Aegis Sciences.

Vaccines and Potential Treatments

Back in June, Bavarian Nordic announced the US Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA) ordered an additional 500,000 doses of it liquid-frozen JYNNEOS, a non-replicating smallpox vaccine for delivery in 2022.

The other vaccine licensed by the FDA is ACAM2000. And although the CDC said there is ample supply for this vaccine, it should not be used in people who have some health conditions, including a weakened immune system, skin conditions like atopic dermatitis/eczema, or pregnancy.

To learn more about these vaccines, go here.

The antiviral therapy, tecovirimat (Tpoxx), manufactured by SIGA Technologies, is approved for smallpox and is being studied for monkeypox treatment. The agent can be administered orally or through IV formulation for smallpox treatment. Back in May, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved the intravenous (IV) formulation for smallpox and is another option for those who are unable to swallow the tecovirimat oral capsules.

To learn more about tecovirimat, view this recent interview with SIGA’s Scientific Chief Officer Dennis Hruby, PhD.