Pinoy scientists invent apparatus that can detect dengue in an hour


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MANILA, Philippines – A group of Filipino scientists have developed an apparatus that can easily detect if a person is infected with dengue virus.
Pinoy scientists invent apparatus that can detect dengue in an hour

Scientists from University of the Philippines-Manila led by dengue scientist Dr. Raul Destura developed the Philippines’ first dengue kit comparable and more affordable than those available internationally. The device is called Biotek-M Dengue Aqua Kit and is designed to easily detect dengue infections in serum/plasma samples.

Pinoy scientists invent apparatus that can detect dengue in an hour
Biotek-M Dengue Aqua Kit can detect if the patient is positive for dengue within an hour | Photo Courtesy: Facebook/The Manila HealthTek Inc.

The technology funded by Department of Science and Technology – Philippine Council for Health Research and Development (DOST-PCHRD) aims to address the dengue concern in the country. It is expected to be launched soon in public hospitals in Regions 1, 3 and 6.

Dr. Destura of how quick the process will be using the Biotek-M. Within an hour, the apparatus will show a green light if a patient is positive for dengue. He explained, “Itong mga sample na ito ay dadalhin doon sa laboratory tap natin at doon ililipat sa Biotek-M Dengue Aqua Kit. Pagkatapos makuha ‘yung nucleic acid material, kukunin ‘yan at ililipat ‘yung sample ng either DNA or RNA doon sa Biotek-M Aqua Kit. Pagkatapos ma-extract ‘yung RNA, ito ay ililipat na sa Biotek-M Dengue Aqua Kit solution at ililipat siya doon sa isothermal heater. Pagkatapos ng mga 50 minutes kukunin natin ‘yung mga sample kung saan namin siya in-incubate at lalagyan natin siya ng dye. ‘Yung dye na ‘yan ang magbibigay ng reading kung ito ay positive for dengue or negative for dengue.”

Dr. Destura said that when they were developing the technology, their aim was to produce a device which is affordable and efficient. He said, “Yung challenge namin sa research team is papaano kaya maa-access ng Pilipino ang isang molecular test na hindi kailangan bumili ng ganu'ng kamamahal na mga equipment para patakbuhin ang test na ito.”

Dr. Destura hopes that more Filipinos would support their award-winning invention. He said, “Naniniwala pa rin ako na mas maraming Pilipino ang nagtitiwala sa gawa ng mga Pinoy."

Award-winning

Last April, the promising technology of Biotek-M Dengue Aqua Kit already bagged a gold medal at the 46th International Exhibition of Invention in Geneva, Switzerland. The prestigious exhibition is regarded as the “world’s most important event exclusively dedicated to inventions and a unique marketplace for industry professionals.”

This year’s exhibition had over 31,050 visitors and 1000 innovations from all over the world.

— Sally, The Summit Express


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