Diagnostic Platform Infectotest®
The Infectotest® diagnostic platform consists of a disposable test chip with an onboard biochemical assay, a measuring module, a smartphone serving as a controlling, data analysis and evaluation computer as well as a software application (app) that runs on the smartphone.
The task of this diagnostic platform is to identify and count infectious pathogens within minutes from a tiny sample of body fluids (whole blood, urine, sputum) in the microliter range and to output a diagnosis. Operation is kept very easy to enable laypersons without prior knowledge to run the diagnostic test. The steps of the test are
- inserting the test chip into the measuring module
- starting the diagnostic app on the smartphone
- performing a finger-stick and dabbing off the drop of blood onto the test chip
- commencing the measurement by tapping the start button of the app
- reading the diagnostic result
- transmitting the result via the cellular mobile connection, if necessary
The measuring principle is based on a highly specific labelling of the infectious pathogens like protozoa, bacteria, fungi or viruses or, alternatively, infected human cells with fluorescent dyes and the subsequent imaging detection and quantification of the infected cells or the pathogens, respectively.
We are currently focussing on a point of care malaria test, that can easily be performed by everyone in remote regions of Africa and Asia without the laboratory equipment like a microscope, chemicals and dyes and the know-how that usually is required. The following information is generated from the finger-stick drop of blood:
- is it an infection with malaria?
- if so, what kind of plasmodium species has caused the infection (P. falciparum, P. vivax, P. malariae)?
- what is the parasite titre – how serious is the infection?
After finishing the testing procedure, results can be transferred to a physician's office, a primary care unit or a hospital for the earliest provision of suitable or even individually tailor-made therapeutics.