Currently, ELISA tests are the golden standard for biomolecule measurements. However, this platform needs centralised lab equipment and involves multiple steps, making these tests expensive and time consuming. Moreover, lack of point of care (PoC) testing options leads to delayed results, which in turn reduces actionability.
There are multiple applications where easy, fast and accurate biomolecule measurement would be beneficial. Examples of possible use cases are PoC infectious disease diagnostics and Therapeutic Drug Monitoring (TDM) for antibodies. Tests to measure biomolecules are not currently used very often because of the aforementioned shortcomings of ELISA tests and the lack of accuracy of existing PoC analysis methods.
Researchers from the Eindhoven University of Technology have developed a new, solution-based PoC platform using bioluminescent sensor proteins to detect biomolecules directly in blood plasma. The technology allows for automatic calibration and produces results with crude samples in a matter of minutes. The test and reader provide the same accuracy as ELISA but eliminate the need for time consuming (washing) steps whilst also offering cost savings.
This patented platform is in the proof of concept phase. Next steps are to explore the most promising applications, decide on the first application, develop a medical device to be used for the clinical validation and commercialise the end product. The research team from Eindhoven is also, as we speak, looking into how this platform can help with the current COVID-19 crisis and future infectious outbreaks. This demonstrates the broad potential impact of this technology within the diagnostics and monitoring field.
Meet the team
Leads NLC’s operations, using his hands-on experience with developing young, fast growing companies. Joost holds an MSc. in Theoretical Physics and provided board level consulting for 20 years, among others as managing partner of healthcare specialist Plexus (later KPMG Plexus, after the acquisition he negotiated).