AsianScientist (Dec. 19, 2018) – The Institute of Microelectronics (IME) of the Agency of Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR), Singapore, together with medical technology firm One BioMed Pte Ltd, has launched a S$9 million (~US$6.5 million) joint lab to develop a point-of-care diagnostic kit that can test for up to 20 types of infectious diseases simultaneously in just 20 minutes.
The spread of disease is accelerated by a lack of access to accurate real-time data. To build up such a real-time database, rapid and inexpensive disease diagnostic tools are required. One BioMed is thus developing a portable point-of-care diagnostic system, where doctors and patients will no longer have to wait for days for samples to be sent to a central laboratory for tests. Their method is also expected to be less expensive than conventional lab testing, and will be produced at a new 1,500 square foot facility located at Singapore’s one-north research district.
The automated diagnostic kit is based on IME’s lab-on-a-chip technology, combined with One BioMed’s silicon biophotonics and solid-phase nucleic acid purification platform technologies. It compresses multiple steps in disease testing, traditionally conducted using a range of laboratory equipment, into a single process, housed within a chip or cartridge that is smaller than a smartphone.
“Innovation is a must in an age where businesses are being disrupted and redefined. IME’s joint lab initiative with One BioMed is an example of how A*STAR helps nurture innovative local enterprises to drive economic growth. We are delighted to take one step forward to improve medical diagnostics in healthcare.” said Professor Kwong Dim-Lee, covering executive director, IME.
Source: A*STAR; Photo: Shutterstock.
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