Coronavirus: Valencia researchers develop low-cost kits to detect Covid-19 in 15 minutes

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The INCLIVA Health Research Institute of the Clinical Hospital of Valencia has obtained 175,000 euros of funding from the Carlos III Health Institute to develop a system with which to detect Covid-19 quickly and obtain information on the sequence of the coronavirus to determine its virulence in each patient, through the analysis of their genetic factors. With these data, the risk of each person and the evolution of the disease can be determined.

To do this, low-cost modular kits will be developed that can work from samples of different origins. The procedure will be very simple and of minimal manipulation – it will be based on isothermal amplification and by means of rapid PCR of the regions of interest – both for the processing of the sample and for the analysis of results. The kits will determine the presence of the coronavirus in between fifteen and thirty minutes and the genetic aspects of the virus and the patient in three to four hours.

The impact will be very high, according to what the promoters of the initiative have explained in a statement, since they have tests in a short time -one or two months- that will detect the presence of the virus in very small quantities (between one and ten copies of the virus). in the sample), the presence of infection in exposed persons, the infective capacity and how the infection could proceed based on the strain to which it has been exposed and its own genetic characteristics. All this would allow rapid action and the identification of those patients who are infected and those who can develop the disease with more complications.

The project, which will take place over twelve months, has Dr. Felipe Javier Chaves, director of the INCLIVA Genomics and Diabetes Unit, in collaboration with the Microbiology and Parasitology Service of the Clinical Hospital of Valencia, as the principal investigator. under the direction of Dr. David Navarro. .

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