Australian researchers invent 20-minute coronavirus blood test in world first

Australian researchers invent 20-minute coronavirus blood test in world first

  • The test uses 25 microlitres of plasma from blood samples and looks for agglutination, or a clustering of red blood cells, caused by the coronavirus
  • Hundreds of samples can be tested every hour, the researchers said, and they hope it can also be used to detect antibodies

Researchers in Australia have devised a test that can determine novel coronavirus infection in about 20 minutes using blood samples in what they say is a world-first breakthrough.

The researchers at Monash University said their test can determine if someone is currently infected and if they have been infected in the past.

“Short-term applications include rapid case identification and contact tracing to limit viral spread, while population screening to determine the extent of viral infection across communities is a longer-term need,” the researchers said in a paper published in the journal ACS Sensors on Friday.

The research team was led by BioPRIA and Monash University’s Chemical Engineering Department, including researchers from the ARC Centre of Excellence in Convergent BioNano Science and Technology (CBNS).

Their test, using 25 microlitres of plasma from blood samples, looks for agglutination, or a clustering of red blood cells, that the coronavirus causes.