SMART/MIT Researchers Develop Method for Rapid, Accurate Virus Detection Four Times Faster Than Conventional PCR Methods; New RADICA Approach Is Highly Specific, Sensitive, and Resistant To Inhibitors

Researchers from Critical Analytics for Manufacturing Personalized-Medicine (CAMP), an interdisciplinary research group at the Singapore-MIT Alliance for Research and Technology (SMART), MIT’s research enterprise in Singapore, have developed a new method for rapid and accurate detection of viral nucleic acids--a breakthrough that can be easily adapted to detect different DNA/RNA targets in viruses like the coronavirus. The pandemic has highlighted the importance of rapid diagnostics and improved methods to detect viruses, especially as the world seeks to be prepared for future pandemics or the next dangerous pathogen. Particularly, the biomanufacturing industry, with the unique challenges of using cells as cell therapy products, is looking for innovations in rapid methods to detect virus contamination as part of their quality control processes and in release testing. While the reverse transcription-quantitative polymerase chain reaction (RT-qPCR) is considered a gold standard for viral detection, there are limitations and they can often produce variable results.

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