The new coronavirus test is based on a gene-editing system known as CRISPR – which is a powerful device for editing genomes that allows scientists to change DNA sequences and alter the gene’s functions quickly.
The M.I.T. scientists invented this two-step test that utilizes CRISPR to examine the patient’s saliva (or nasal swabs) for possible signs of coronavirus genetic code. Each coronavirus test would only cost 6 US dollars!
It works the same as the pregnancy test – when two lines appear on a thin paper soaked into fluid, the test is positive!
Feng Zhang, one of the researchers of the Broad Institute of M.I.T. and inventors of this coronavirus test using CRISPR, expressed his excitement that this could be the solution where people won’t be relying on an expensive laboratory.
Omar Abudayyeh, one of Dr. Zhang’s colleagues, stated that a more distributed new technologies that don’t demand centralized laboratories or thousands of qualified people are what we need.
How this test work?!
The new coronavirus test with CRISPR works by placing the saliva or nasal swab of the patient in a chemical-filled tube that draws the viruses, then the chemical yield is put into a second tube with CRISPR molecules that track down the coronavirus.
The second tube with CRISPR molecules should stay at 60 degrees Celsius for an hour to see the full results.
On the report of the M.I.T. team’s site, the test is not endorsed for clinical use yet. However, the M.I.T. scientists are already negotiating with the manufacturers to produce an extensive one-vial version, if this could happen then it will greatly aid the insufficient coronavirus testing in the US.
Dr. Zhang and his team already created their site with the STOPCovid data, expecting that many scientists and researchers will attempt to use the $6 coronavirus test with CRISPR and look for ways to advance it!