The technology consists of a portable sample preparation platform that enables high-efficiency virus enrichment from field samples (from cotton swabs, blood, and tissue biopsy), without using antibodies. The platform allows the specic capture of viral particles while removing host or sample contaminates. Viruses of interest are captured by carefully tuning the filter pore size.
Proof-of-concept studies have demonstrated the platform to be compatible with plant, animal, and human samples. The Technology Readiness Level for both indications is estimated to be a 5/9. During initial studies, the USDA has validated the test for the diagnosis of plum pox virus. Soon to be published experiments additionally validate the test for the capture (and subsequent NGS analysis) of Avian influenza.
The team is working to develop applications that include in-laboratory quick-diagnosis of specific viruses (via PCR) as well as on-site capture and characterization of unknown viruses (via NGS). In addition, immunostaining approaches (ELISA) are also being investigated for specific markets. These applications include the development of a disposable cartridge for customer use. The cartridges will be inserted into a universal PCR/NGS interface module with optional battery power for remote applications.
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