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A Smartphone-based Rapid Handheld Point-of-Care Test for SARS-CoV-2 with Real Time Surveillance.

B: One to watch

Dr. Pantelis Georgiou and his team at Imperial College London have developed Lacewing, a smartphone-based handheld point-of-care test for rapid detection of infectious diseases. 

This uses a semiconductor-based lab-on-chip device able to rapidly identify the virus that causes Covid-19 (SARS-CoV-2) from nasopharyngeal samples, utilising an isothermal nucleic acid assay for on-chip real-time detection with high sensitivity and specificity in under 30 minutes. Positive results are communicated to the cloud for epidemiological surveillance and mapping of the outbreak, see attachments.

The complete system is a handheld portable device capable of DNA and RNA detection. It can be used for community testing in addition to addressing the need for new accessible diagnostics to be rapidly deployed in hospitals for testing front-line staff and patients. The technology is co-designed with clinicians and epidemiologists working closely with the engineering team at all stages to guarantee end user adoption.

How quickly could this be deployed and what are the dependencies?

The test cartridges and platform will be demonstrated as part of a clinical validation over the next 2 months within Imperial NHS trust. In 3 months, the technology will be scaled up and deployed to test within the NHS. 

What is the likely production volume?

We are aiming to scale up capacity to deliver up to 1000 tests per month.

What are the risks and barriers to using this at scale?

Each diagnostic cartridge can test one patient sample at a time. The platform however is small and portable, and we envisage running multiple platforms in a lab setting. Additionally, each cartridge can run a panel of infectious markers so it could be adopted to detect multiple infections from a single test.

Who are you already partnering with on this?

Our team is collaborating with the NiHR funded Health Protection Research Unit in Healthcare Associated Infections and Antimicrobial Research at Imperial College London.

The team also works in close partnership with Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust and Public Health England.

edited on Apr 14, 2020 by Pantelis Georgiou
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Ken Garner Apr 20, 2020

Hi Nicolas, This looks very interesting, my network in UK and Scancinavia would be interested in learning more about your platform. could we chat either today or tomorrow?

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Nicolas Moser Apr 21, 2020

Dear Ken, of course very happy to talk later today! My email is , could you drop me an email with your availabilities? Many thanks!

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Bev Matthews Apr 23, 2020

The idea has been progressed to the next milestone.

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Bev Matthews Apr 23, 2020

Status label added: B

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Bev Matthews Apr 23, 2020

Thank you Pantelis for your submission, which has now has an initial assessment. We have a couple of queries that we would like to hear about:

1. Do you have a CE mark?
2. Could you share the results of your validation when available please?

We look forward to hearing from you

Users tagged:

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Pantelis Georgiou Apr 25, 2020

Hello Bev, we are currently performing our validation study for COVID19, the data of which will be used for our technical folder to apply for CE mark. We will share our validation data when we conclude our study over the next few months and will also notify you of our CE mark in due course.

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Bev Matthews Apr 25, 2020

The idea has been progressed to the next milestone.

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