BATON ROUGE, La. (BRPROUD)- LSU Biological Sciences Postdoctoral Research Fellow and immunologist Luan Vu is working with LSU Mechanical Engineering Assistant Professor Manas Gartia to create a smartphone-based biosensor device to detect COVID-19 antigens in body fluids.
The idea was born when the team realized the struggles of getting testing for COVID-19.
“What this tool does is it allows for rapid identification of infection. And you can do this without the need of a healthcare provider and it decentralizes testing,” Dr. Stephania Cormier, LSU Wiener Chair Professor said.
The sensor will attach to a smart phone, the user will spit on the device, the saliva will detect the coronavirus and an app connected to the device will then provide the test results.
Once the device is ready, Vu says it can help speed up the process for widespread testing.
“The potential customers of our testing device include but are not limited to federal/state/local governments, schools and universities, public health agencies, companies, and specific community subpopulations such as athletics, bands, etc.,” Vu said. “In addition, our platform could be rapidly modified for newly emerging infectious diseases.”
Professor Manas Gartia says the device will use an optical fiber to detect the saliva…this technology has the same building blocks for Wi-Fi.
The team expects the device to be ready by June 2021.
“We are having a lot of fun,” Cormier said. “Us coming together allows us to approach this from a unique perspective.”