Correct diagnosis is essential for choosing the right treatment for billions of cases of infectious diseases occurring annually throughout the world. In today’s medicine, an emerging megatrend is point-of-care (POC), or point-of-impact, diagnostics.
A team of scientists at the University of Helsinki have created an innovative diagnostic concept based on time-resolved Förster Resonance Energy Transfer (TR-FRET) for on-site rapid measurement of pathogen-specific antibodies.
This technology, based on energy transfer between two light-sensitive molecules, could revolutionize the serodiagnosis of microbial and also autoimmune and allergic disorders.
Rapid wash-free immunoassays for measurement of nearly any diagnostic antibody
The classical procedures in medical diagnostics are time- and labor-consuming, and require sizeable instrumentation. The RFS solution is homogenous (wash-free) measurement, yielding results instantaneously after combining the reagents.
The team provides high-quality rapid homogeneous assays for point-of-care serodiagnosis, and new portable devices for these POC approaches. The LFRET immunoassay platform is being developed based on TR-FRET fluorescence and recombinant antigens. It has proven to be highly suitable for acute illness diagnosis.
The approach relies on simultaneous binding of fluorophore-labelled antigen and protein L to an immunoglobulin molecule, thus forming a FRET pair. The entire diagnostic procedure takes less than 30 min, which is considerably faster than the conventional, multiphase diagnostics.
The LFRET immunoassay platform can be expected to qualify for nearly any disease that today can be diagnosed by antibody measurement.
RFS team is driving for first commercial pilots
After testing the viability of RFS in the research setting, the team is now reaching out to potential customers for first commercial pilots. An international patent application has been filed and is under process.