Researchers develop first lab-on-chip for detection of multiple tropical infectious diseases

April 25, 2013

The Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR) and Veredus Laboratories, a leading supplier of innovative molecular diagnostic tools, announced the launch of VereTrop, the first biochip in the molecular diagnostics market that can identify 13 different major tropical diseases from a single blood sample.

With its high level of automation, this lab-on-chip diagnostic kit is poised to transform the quality and efficiency of testing tropical , including dengue fever, malaria, and hand, , in the field.

The lead in this project, Associate Professor Lisa F.P. Ng from A*STAR's Singapore Immunology Network (SIgN) said, " often reflect common symptoms like fever, and may not be accurately diagnosed early by doctors. This portable test kit is a rapid and reliable method to accurately test for multiple pathogenic targets from just one blood sample in a matter of hours."

Together with Professor Laurent Renia, an expert in Malaria Immunobiology at SIgN, the team from SIgN has successfully validated the kit on patient samples in the external fields of Northern Thailand, at the Thai-Myanmar border.

Professor François H Nosten, the clinical collaborator at the Oxford Clinical Unit in Mae Sot and Director of the Shoklo Malaria Research Unit said, "This technology opens new possibilities for the accurate and rapid diagnostic of important infectious diseases that remain the main causes of illness in the tropics. Its versatility and ease of use will change the approach to diagnostics at the periphery of health care system."

Developed with infectious disease expertise from A*STAR's SIgN, this biochip, which operates on STMicroelectronics' Lab-on-Chip platform, was initiated between ETPL, the technology transfer arm of A*STAR and Veredus in 2009. Prior to this, Veredus had licensed diagnostic technology from A*STAR in the areas of influenza and malaria.

"Veredus and A*STAR have worked on several collaborative projects dating back to 2004," said Dr. Rosemary Tan, CEO of Veredus Laboratories, a Singapore-based, majority owned subsidiary of STMicroelectronics. "This latest project on VereTrop Lab-on-Chip has combined the strengths and expertise of A*STAR, Veredus, and STMicroelectronics to create a powerful multiplexed molecular product that can rapidly detect and differentiate symptomatically similar tropical infectious diseases and enable timely proper treatment."

"After this journey of more than three years, we are glad that such a compelling technologically-advanced product with global healthcare benefits is ready to be launched to the market. Veredus is a good example of how local companies can work with A*STAR for a consistent stream of technology to develop products that can enhance their offerings and level them up to be competitive and relevant globally," said Philip Lim, Chief Executive Officer of ETPL.

Related Stories

Recommended for you

Experimental MERS vaccine shows promise in animal studies

July 28, 2015

A two-step regimen of experimental vaccines against Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) prompted immune responses in mice and rhesus macaques, report National Institutes of Health scientists who designed the vaccines. ...

Can social isolation fuel epidemics?

July 21, 2015

Conventional wisdom has it that the more people stay within their own social groups and avoid others, the less likely it is small disease outbreaks turn into full-blown epidemics. But the conventional wisdom is wrong, according ...

Lack of knowledge on animal disease leaves humans at risk

July 20, 2015

Researchers from the University of Sydney have painted the most detailed picture to date of major infectious diseases shared between wildlife and livestock, and found a huge gap in knowledge about diseases which could spread ...

IBD genetically similar in Europeans and non-Europeans

July 20, 2015

The first genetic study of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) to include individuals from diverse populations has shown that the regions of the genome underlying the disease are consistent around the world. This study, conducted ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.