Industry News: Early detection of Covid-19 using Raman spectroscopy and Functionalised Nano Particles

Professor Tatiana Perova & Professor Iouri Gounko (Trinity College) will be speaking at the Tyndall Bi-centenary online seminar

31 Jul 2020

Advanced Nano Technologies are pleased to inform you that on Sunday 2nd August their Covid-19 research collaboration with Starna Scientific and Trinity College Schools of Chemistry and Engineering will be providing an update on progress toward developing a Point Of Interaction Indicative Test (POIN2T) for Covid-19. 

Professor Tatiana Perova & Professor Iouri Gounko (Trinity College) will be speaking at the Tyndall Bi-centenary online seminar hosted by Carlow County Museum ( Prof. Perova and Prof. Gounko will be explaining how the Tyndall inspired ANT Flipper Drop Laboratory has been used to detect Functionalised Nano Particles at lower concentration than previously possible and this performance will be used in the detection of Covid-19 from saliva samples. 

Now that the detection of the nanoparticles has been demonstrated the next stage in the research is to test the ability of the nanoparticles to adhere to the Covid-19 virus. 
Once this is proven we will move to make this application available immediately to providers of mass transport and other interested customers. 

Summary application

Point of Interaction Indicative Testing (POIN2T) 
A simple to use device that is present at point of interaction (airport security, cruise ship boarding point, community centre) that detects the presence of Covid-19 in saliva samples before the candidate has become contagious or symptomatic. 

The process

Prospective passengers provide a deep throat saliva sample by making “Kruuuaaa” noise and depositing saliva sample into a vial pre-loaded with functionalized nanoparticles. 
The vial is closed and shaken vigorously and then introduced to a magnet to draw the nanoparticles together. 
Sample with nanoparticles is recovered and placed on the disposable plinth in the ANT Flipper.
Flipper is closed and the sample is analyzed, the result is generated in less than 30 seconds, the sample is disposed to sharps. 
The result indicates whether Covid-19 is or is not detectable – the detection limit using the POIN2T device is below the viral load needed for contagious spread.

The benefits 

The POIN2T  system will enable transport providers to detect early-stage presence of Covid-19 in passengers seeking to board vehicles. Where a potential passenger result is negative for Covid-19 it demonstrates that the virus is not present in detectable levels and thus they do not carry sufficient viral load to be contagious. Conclusive medical diagnosis is left to PCR testing. This enables transport providers to be certain that for the duration of their interaction with these passengers no viral transmission is possible. 
The cost per test is expected to be less than €5 and the time taken on the device for testing is less than 2 minutes.  

Advanced Nano Technologies believe that until a mass adopted vaccine is delivered the best means of restoring public health and economic activity is the earliest detection of Covid-19 before patients become contagious. This enables earlier and more effective isolation of the virus and leads to the rapid reduction of the R number and the eventual elimination of transmission. 
Detection of Covid-19 before patients become contagious combined with an understanding of the incubation period of the virus means the use of the ANT POIN2T device can reduce or eliminate community spread particularly in situations where social distancing is impractical such as air transport and cruise ships. 

Timeline of availability 

The forecast completion of the research into the ability of the collaborative technologies to detect Covid-19 at suitable limits of detection is planned for end of August 2020. At that point the move to commercial availability is immediate. 

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