Point of Care Diagnostics in the Age of COVID-19.

Publication Type:
Journal Article
Diagnostics (Basel, Switzerland), 2020, 11, (1), pp. 9-9
Issue Date:
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The recent outbreak of the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) and its associated serious respiratory disease, coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), poses a major threat to global public health. Owing to the lack of vaccine and effective treatments, many countries have been overwhelmed with an exponential spread of the virus and surge in the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases. Current standard diagnostic methods are inadequate for widespread testing as they suffer from prolonged turn-around times (>12 h) and mostly rely on high-biosafety-level laboratories and well-trained technicians. Point-of-care (POC) tests have the potential to vastly improve healthcare in several ways, ranging from enabling earlier detection and easier monitoring of disease to reaching remote populations. In recent years, the field of POC diagnostics has improved markedly with the advent of micro- and nanotechnologies. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, POC technologies have been rapidly innovated to address key limitations faced in existing standard diagnostic methods. This review summarizes and compares the latest available POC immunoassay, nucleic acid-based and clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats- (CRISPR)-mediated tests for SARS-CoV-2 detection that we anticipate aiding healthcare facilities to control virus infection and prevent subsequent spread.
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