Although Nucleic Acid Amplification Tests (NAATs) are the gold standard in diagnostics due to their increased sensitivity and specificity compared to antigen-based tests, their success depends on expensive lab infrastructure (e.g., reliable power, environmental controls, equipment maintenance) that is cost-prohibitive for most low-resource health systems. In these settings, healthcare providers need an equally high-performing yet more affordable, cartridge-based device that is easier to use – helping enable community-based or widely distributed testing.
To meet the need, GH Labs and our research partners, including Bioaster and Global Access Diagnostics (GADx), are developing a self-contained, self-powered, and cartridge based NAAT prototype. This “NAAT on a strip” has a similar user experience to standard lateral flow assays and a high-volume, low-cost manufacturing product profile to ensure the tests are accessible and affordable to all who need it. Completion of this integrated yet early-stage prototype is expected in 2023.