בדיקה ינשוף קורונה ננוסנט
NanoScent's nasal test
Photo: Courtesy
NanoScent's nasal test

Israeli researchers develop 30-second coronavirus test

The testing kit developed by start-up NanoScent utilizes nano-scale sensor-based smelling system to identify virus in its earliest stages, scan the data and provide result within record time; method has 90% success rate

Dr. Itay Gal |
Published: 07.03.20 , 13:53
An Israeli start-up company has developed a coronavirus testing kit, which provides results within 30 seconds.
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  • The testing kit, developed by NanoScent, utilizes a nano-scale, sensor-based smelling system, designed to detect the pathogen at its early stages, and has proven to have 90% success rate in identifying COVID-19 carriers.
    בדיקה ינשוף קורונה ננוסנטבדיקה ינשוף קורונה ננוסנט
    NanoScent's nasal test
    (Photo: Courtesy)
    The company developed the test with the help of the Israeli Innovation Authority and the Health Ministry, which have funded the testing kit’s development.
    The kit includes a perishable component that connects to the nose, which is manufactured by the Israeli company Netafim, and electronic components manufactured by the South Korean company DreamTech.
    These components give the kit the ability to identify a coronavirus patient within 30 seconds.
    NanoScent’s kit absorbs the vapors of the decomposition processes that occurs when the COVID-19 contagion penetrates the host’s nose or pharynx - this means that the kit is also capable of detecting non-symptomatic coronavirus carriers as early as four days after initial infection.
    אטילה ינשוף קורונה בדיקהאטילה ינשוף קורונה בדיקה
    Ynet's Attila Somfalvi using NanoScent's nasal test
    (Photo: Ynet)
    The pilot product has been successfully tested among dozens of patients at the Sheba Medical Center. In light of its success, it has also been expanded to several Magen David Adom drive-in test sites across the country and a number of hospitals, including Ichilov in Tel Aviv and Poriya in Tiberias.
    According to the company, the test is not meant to replace the swab-based virus diagnosis, but rather to give an initial indication of infection - much like the current temperature checks performed outside of businesses.
    These top of the line tests, NanoScent explains, can be utilized in crowded places, for example in entrances to airports, at workplaces, and even at cultural venues, stadiums and educational institutions.
    מעבדה של נגיף הקורונה ברחובותמעבדה של נגיף הקורונה ברחובות
    An Israeli health worker inspects a swab-based coronavirus test
    (Photo: AFP)
    The company has already received several inquiries from major companies around the world wishing to purchase the product.
    Meanwhile, two other test kits of Israeli origin have also been developed.
    The first is a breath test developed by researchers at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev in Be'er Sheva.
    The test diagnoses the coronavirus within a minute, and automatically backs up the results to a database that can be accessed by the authorities to facilitate patient prioritization and care.
    Ben-Gurion University of the Negev Ben-Gurion University of the Negev
    Ben-Gurion University of the Negev
    (Photo: Herzl Yosef)
    Results of tests performed on 120 clinical patients, showed 90% accuracy in diagnosing coronavirus patients - this is in comparison to the standard PCR test carried out with swabs.
    The second is a test developed by the israeli companies NextGen and Scantech, and is being tested in the Meir Hospital in the city of Kfar Saba.
    This test identifies the coronavirus via exhalation, and uses biomarkers related to the contagion to identify whether a person is infected in about a minute.

    The article initially stated that the test takes 30 minutes and was amended accordingly
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