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Through my limited research I have been led to believe that the pcr test is identifying only 20 base pairs or a virus that may have around 30,000 pairs in its sequence. As I am not a scientist I wondered if the correct analogy to give to a layperson would be:         Covid 19 is a cherry pie and the pcr test is identifying flour

 

Alternatively does the pcr test enable more refined identification so that we can identify the cherry filling that differentiates the covid 19 pie from all other pies?

 

I would be grateful if anyone in the community with a scientific background could set me straight.

 

Many thanks for any assistance that you may be able to provide.

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