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be expensive and often cannot analyze properly
without additional (also costly) instruments.
But, at AACC 2015, researchers from DiaSys
Diagnostics India in Mumbai presented QDx
InstaLab, a point-of-care device that can perform
all of the clinical tests that labs routinely order as
part of yearly physicals to evaluate organ function
and check for conditions such as diabetes and
liver and kidney disease. The QDx InstaLab can
also test cholesterol levels to screen for heart
disease, and can screen for bleeding problems in
the case of deadly blood clotting.
The device only needs a few drops of blood
from a fingerprick using inexpensive microfluidic
cartridge technology with novel nanomateri-al-based plastic electrochemical biosensors.
Results to all the tests are provided in three to 10
Rapid Ebola test
Based on research coming out of AACC and
other conferences this year, fingerprick technology is becoming more and more popular. The
appeal is triple-fold–the technology allows more
rapid testing, it is non-invasive and the smaller
needles combined with less sample reduce analysis costs.
At AACC, researchers from the Viral Hemor-
rhagic Fever Consortium discussed the ReEBOV
Antigen Rapid Test Kit, the first and only rapid
diagnostic test for Ebola to receive approval from
WHO. The test uses a few drops of blood and
the same technology found in at-home preg-
Ebola, qRT-PCR, can take up to a day to return a
The WHO study, conducted in Sierra Leone,
compares ReEBOV’s performance with qRT-PCR. By testing 292 stored patient samples with
both methods, researchers found that ReEBOV
performed nearly as well as the standard, and
agreed with qRT-PCR on 91.8 percent of infected samples and 84.6 percent of non-infected
In Ebola-hotspots like Sierra-Leone and Liberia,
where the disease recently took foothold again, the
need for an inexpensive, easily administered test
that can provide health care workers with a conta-gious-or-not diagnosis cannot be understated.
“This really establishes that the rapid test can
be used as a triage method to quickly provide patient results that can later be confirmed by PCR,”
said Matt Boisen, Development Director of In
Vitro Diagnostics at the Viral Hemorrhagic Fever
Consortium, in a press release. “This represents
a breakthrough in the detection of Ebola for this
and future Ebola virus outbreaks.” ●
Michelle Taylor, Editor-in-Chief