The Institute of Inflammation, Immunology and Infectious Disease at Purdue University is partnering with a Cleveland-based technology firm to develop a rapid diagnostic platform for the virus that causes COVID-19 and other pathogens. The university says the effort with IdentifySensors Biologics “takes a completely different path” than current diagnostic tests.
The platform combines technology based on the work of Lia Stanciu, a professor of materials engineering at Purdue, which the university says can identify pathogens “by their induced distinctive resistance change to electronic materials.”
IdentifySensors Biologics says its electronic sensor technology, was originally designed to detect spoilage and specific pathogens in the food supply chain.
Purdue says, unlike other molecular tests for COVID-19, the platform automatically transmits test results to consumer smartphones and health agencies. The university is currently researching and testing the platform for commercialization in various settings such as clinics and point-of-care.
Richard Kuhn, director of the Institute of Inflammation, Immunology and Infectious Disease, says the COVID-19 research with the platform “is showing some very promising results.”
“Purdue is doing a great job at developing the sensors for this platform,” said Dr. Gregory Hummer, chief executive officer of IdentifySensors. “We intend to commercialize this technology to be used in medical diagnostics, food safety and security, environmental monitoring and national security.”
The university says the platform could be easily modified to also detect influenza, Zika, dengue, HIV/AIDS, foodborne pathogens and other diseases.