Prototype of portable SARS-CoV-2 detection system could ‘bypass lab’ to deliver rapid results

Written by Ilana Landau

Researchers from the University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign (IL, USA) have demonstrated a prototype of a rapid, portable SARS-CoV-2 detection system that does not require an RNA extraction kit, thereby ‘bypassing the lab’. If approved, such a device could enable point-of-care COVID-19 diagnosis. Currently, typical diagnostic tests for SARS-CoV-2 – the virus responsible for causing COVID-19 – involve the use of a nasopharyngeal swab to collect a sample from a suspected patient and sending the sample, which is placed in viral transport media, to a lab where viral RNA extraction is performed via a complex reverse transcriptase, polymerase chain reaction...

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