New test detects Covid and 4 other respiratory infections

A team from the Universitat Politècnica de València (UPV) has developed a new test, based on compact disc technology, which allows up to five different respiratory infections to be detected quickly, easily and at a very low cost: covid-19, Influenza A, Influenza B, Adenovirus and Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV).

The new test, in the prototype phase, is capable of analysing up to six samples at the same time, in 30 minutes and at a cost that the researchers calculate at 1 euro per sample, according to sources from the academic institution.

The UPV team, coordinated by Professor Ángel Maquieira, belonging to the Institute for Molecular Recognition and Technological Development (IDM) of the UPV, has had the collaboration of the University of Valencia (UV) and the Clinical Hospital of València-Institute Health Research INCLIVA.

The biosensing system -test- consists of a microperforated transparent disc with microfluidic structures in which the samples to be analysed are deposited, and a DVD-type compact disc reader adapted with technology developed by the UPV research group.

“When a person tests positive, the sample generates an optical signal that the reader interprets and determines whether the patient is infected or not and what pathology they are suffering from,” explains Sergi Morais, professor at the Department of Chemistry and researcher at the IDM Institute of the UPV and one of the creators of the test.

The device devised by the UPV team allows the simultaneous detection of both viral antigens in nasopharyngeal swab samples and the presence of specific antiviral antibodies in human serum samples.