For millenia, mankind has been at war with an enemy too small to see: viruses. COVID-19 showed all too clearly that this contest rages on. With over 1 million deaths worldwide, COVID-19 has been a win for the wrong side. There will be more epidemics. Next time we must be ready.
Readiness means the capacity to test people for a new virus. For months after any novel virus outbreak, the only effective way to prevent spread is testing. In 2020 we had no effective test for for 60 days and no broad availability for 4-6 months. This was too late to stop the spread.
NanoEngineering Corporation is dedicated to ensuring that viral outbreaks never again become pandemics. Our new method for detecting viruses promises fast, cheap, and accurate point-of-care diagnostics for all viruses, known and unknown. It's too late for COVID-19; we're focused on the next outbreak.
Read on to learn how we are working to end pandemics through testing.
COVID-19 taught us that to be effective in the early stages of a pandemic, virus testing must be
READY, FAST, CHEAP, ACCURATE, and SIMPLE.
To focus and inspire the public, NanoEngineering a new aspirational standard for Virus Testing, the "Five by Five":
DAYS TO DEPLOY
Virus testing needs to be ready and widely available at the beginning of an outbreak, when it can make a real difference.
MINUTES TO RESULTS
Speed is everything. In a modern liberal society, individual behavior cannot be resricted in the absence of a positive test result. Fast testing is freedom.
Tests must cover all viruses at low cost, including consumables, equipment and labor. Testing is for everyone, not just the rich or the insured.
% ERROR RATE
95% sensitivity for the diagnosis of viral infection is often deemed a minimum standard, i.e. false negatives < 5%. The standard should also be applied to specificity, i.e. false positives <5%.
YEAR OLD CAN OPERATE
Point of care testing should be self-service. Special training or qualifications must be avoided.
Our current systems are prototypes built for the scientific community. Significant improvement in the speed and cost of sample preparation will be required to hit the ambitious targets set in the Rule of Fives. Our prototype design must be upgraded for manufacturability and durability. Software needs to be made easier to use, and a database of virus spectra needs to be developed. FDA approval is also of great benefit.
Our goal is to be ready to ship thousands of testing systems annually by 2025. Partnerships with Yale University, Brookhaven National Labs, Scripps Institute and others have been a force multiplier. Our team has doubled since last year, and passion for our mission has never been greater.