Greek, Cypriot Scientists Develop New Rapid Covid Test



Credit: Wikimedia Commons

A new Covid test being used in England can quickly determine if a patient is positive for coronavirus or not in the space of only 90 minutes.

The test, dubbed COVIDNudge, was developed by the company “DnaNudge,” the result of a collaboration between Greek scientist Dr. Maria Karvela and Professor Christofer Toumazou, who was born in England of Greek-Cypriot parents.

The Covid-19 Nudge Test, developed in the UK. Credit: DnaNudge/Facebook

Professor Tomazou is a world-renowned electrical engineer and and co-founder and CEO of the company. He currently teaches at Imperial College London, with a focus in Biomedical Engineering.

Dr. Maria Karvela is CSO and co-founder of DnaNudge. After receiving her Bachelor’s degree in biology from the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, Dr. Karvela went on to acquire a Master’s in Medical Genetics and later a PHD in Oncology/Hematology, both from the University of Glasgow.

The new, revolutionary test comes in the form of a small disposable cartridge which contains chemicals necessary for diagnosing the virus.

Covid-19 testing underway with the new CovidNudge at a London hospital in the summer of 2020. Credit:DnaNudge/Facebook

Throat and nasal swabs are then inserted into the box. The box itself is then placed inside a small machine, which analyzes the samples. This means that anyone who can use a swab appropriately can conduct the test, bypassing the need to send swabs to a laboratory for analysis.

Despite its rapid results, the testing machine has a limited capacity of only about 16 tests per day. Therefore, the test is not considered to be a replacement for the standard Covid test; it is rather a solution for determining someone’s status very quickly when results are urgently needed.

When compared to laboratory tests, DNA Nudge’s new rapid test demonstrated 100% accuracy in determining negative results, and 94% accuracy when the sample was positive in the lab.

The United Kingdom has ordered 5.8 million of the disposable cartridges and 5,000 of the analysis machines for use in hospitals around the country.