FOX News recently visited BGU to interview Prof. Gabby Sarusi. He developed a one-minute electro-optical test using breath samples that will identify both asymptomatic and affected carriers of the COVID-19 virus in under one minute with greater than 90% accuracy.
Each test kit will cost approximately $50, which is far less costly than standard, laboratory-based polymerase chain reaction (PCR) tests. It does not require a lab environment so it can be deployed at critical locations such as airports, border crossings, stadiums, and other environments, as well as healthcare facilities where rapid testing is required.
Initial clinical trials completed with the Israel Defense Ministry on more than 150 Israelis had a better than 90% success rate. The ongoing trials will compare samples from COVID-19 patients with samples of patients with other diseases to detect the presence as well as the specific stage of COVID-19 infection.
“Right from the beginning of the trials, we received statistically significant results in line with our simulations and actual PCR tests that were conducted in parallel,” says Prof. Sarusi, deputy head of research at the School of Electrical and Computer Engineering and a faculty member of the Electro-Optical Engineering Unit at BGU. “We are now validating the robustness of the test and preparing to submit for FDA accelerated approval.”
The test could be available in a matter of weeks.
The new test is just one of more than 70 initiatives underway as part of the BGU COVID-19 Response Effort. These each require financial support, and AABGU has announced its commitment to raise emergency funds, enabling BGU to participate fully in the world’s efforts at mitigation and containment.