COVID-19 Detection: Now, An Antibody Test Without Blood Sample

Tokyo: An antibody-based method for rapid and reliable detection of coronavirus, without having to take blood sample, has been developed in Japan, PTI reported.

Detection of SARS-CoV-2-specific antibodies is one way to confirm COVID-19 infection. Testing strips based on gold nanoparticles are used in several countries, which produce reliable results within 10-20 minutes. However, they require blood samples, collected via a finger prick, which can be painful and enhances risk of infection or cross-contamination.

To eliminate those chance factors, researchers in Japan have developed the new method without involving blood samples.

“To develop a minimally invasive detection assay that would avoid these drawbacks, we explored the idea of sampling and testing the interstitial fluid (ISF), which is located in the epidermis and dermis layers of human skin,” explained Tokyo University’s Leilei Bao.

Such a device has good potential for rapid screening of coronavirus and other infectious diseases, and is safe and acceptable to patients, the researchers assured.

They added that the new device can be used even in countries which are not affluent – one of the main aims for global management of infectious disease.

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