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Ultra-Portable Rapid Test Platform Offers Complete Sample-to-Answer Solution for Remote and Off-Grid Testing

By HospiMedica International staff writers
Posted on 07 Jun 2023
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Image: The Geo portable testing platform integrated with the Snap collection device (Photo courtesy of ReadyGo Diagnostics)
Image: The Geo portable testing platform integrated with the Snap collection device (Photo courtesy of ReadyGo Diagnostics)

An ultra-portable isothermal molecular diagnostics system integrated with a patented device which combines sample collection and processing into a single, easy-to-use disposable is set to revolutionize low-cost decentralized diagnostic testing.

ReadyGo Diagnostics’ (Bath, UK) Geo is a rapid test platform designed for small labs, pharmacies, and remote diagnostic needs. This highly portable device enables molecular tests to be run anywhere and delivers results in approximately 20 minutes. Designed to go anywhere, Geo uses ReadyGo’s Flex reagents which do not require cold-chain, making it a true off-grid, go-anywhere test platform. The platform also does not require a specialized operator or accurate pipetting thanks to its pre-measured reagents.

Combined with ReadyGo's innovative sample collection device, Snap, Geo offers a comprehensive solution for remote and off-grid testing of up to eight samples simultaneously. Snap, a compact, single-use device about the size of a highlighter pen, integrates sample collection and preparation. It uses a specialized material to absorb a specified amount of the patient's sample via capillary action, which is then mixed with a dried lysis reagent stored within the device. The reagent's components are similar to those in mouthwash, safe for human use, and highly effective at breaking down pathogens without inhibiting nucleic acid amplification reactions.

Operating the Snap device is simple: the user collects a sample, and bends the device to break an internal valve, releasing the exact amount of buffer required for the reaction into the chamber. Then, the user simply squeezes the bulb on the end of the device to release the contents for diagnostic testing. This simple sample preparation method also reduces the cost of the diagnostic assay, as it does not require any moving components. Snap eliminates the buffer measuring step, which some users found challenging when using over-the-counter lateral flow COVID-19 tests. When paired with Geo's eight-well isothermal amplification platform, the user can directly transfer Snap's contents into tubes pre-filled with assay reagents, then place the tubes in the Geo instrument for amplification and reading. Snap can be used with various samples, including saliva, nasal, buccal, and even surface samples, with ReadyGo also developing options for blood, urine, and stool sample collection.

ReadyGo has designed tests using recombinase polymerase amplification (RPA) and loop-mediated isothermal amplification (LAMP) for Geo's isothermal amplification and is currently developing its proprietary chemistry. The Geo platform is expected to be priced under USD 1,000, with individual assays costing around USD 10, making it a low-cost diagnostic solution for small labs and research groups. Additionally, the Geo system is designed for 3D printing in its manufacturing process, in line with ReadyGo’s goal to decentralize production and commercialization. This design will allow the system to be produced locally wherever testing is required and also provide the benefit of lower assembly costs in various parts of the world. The Geo system's streamlined design also reduces the need for plastics in its construction. ReadyGo aims to collaborate with other labs and companies, as well as develop tests that can be commercialized by its partners.

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