The SalivaDirect test detects the presence of SARS-CoV-2 RNA (the genetic material of the virus) in saliva.
During comparisons (New window) with common nasopharyngeal swabs, this test correctly identified 32 of 34 positive samples and 30 of 33 negative samples.
The researchers argue that this test is less invasive than nasopharyngeal swabs, does not require the intervention of a medical expert, and does not require any of the chemicals commonly used to extract and store RNA. .
They estimate that each test would cost less than US $ 5 and are asking the United States Food and Drug Administration to grant them emergency clearance.
Saliva testing under development in Canada
Earlier this summer, Saskatchewan researchers have announced plans for a test to detect SARS-CoV-2 by saliva, which would give a result in just a few minutes.
This test, developed by the University of Saskatchewan and the University of Regina, aims to detect SARS-CoV-2 proteins and peptides in saliva. It could be accessible by March 2021, according to the researchers.
For their part, British Columbian researchers Kelowna-based said in the spring they were working on creating a saliva test that would also only take a few minutes.
The test would use molecules that attach to the S protein (spike protein) on the surface of the virus in order to detect it. They think they can finalize it by the end of the year.
The University of Victoria and the company ImmunoPrecise Antibodies are also trying to create a test using saliva, using technology designed to detect the Zika virus.
A saliva sample would be placed on a thin strip, which would change color when the virus was detected. The researchers also hope their test will be ready by the end of 2020.
Source: Radio-Canada | Science