NIH Research Festival
Diarrheal disease remains a second leading cause of childhood death in the global majority population as well as being a significant health and financial burden, particularly to vulnerable populations such as the young, the immunocompromised including IBD patients, AIDS patients, organ transplant patients, cancer patients and the elderly in all countries. The current gold standards in enteropathogen testing in stool either involve the culturing of the pathogen, immunological identification and/or of multiplexed PCR (molecular identification) to positively identify the presence of an array of bacterial, parasitic and viral pathogens. These methods are slow and require highly skilled technicians and dedicated laboratory resources, which are not readily available to healthcare providers in limited resource environments; and may constitute an unnecessary financial burden in the routine diagnosis and treatment of gastrointestinal (GI) complaints, specifically diarrhea. There is a need for rapid, real time, low-cost, point-of-care or point-of-need detection of diarrhea-causing pathogens to inform timely and appropriate interventions that may improve patient outcomes, limit the loss of patients to follow up and mitigate financial burdens. We describe a paper origami tool for the multiplexed detection of the nucleic acids of common diarrhea-causing pathogens in 15 minutes from stool at the point-of-need. The tool has been optimized for the detection of the most common diarrhea casing bacteria, parasites and viruses: E. coli, C. difficile, Norovirus, Campylobacter spp., Cryptosporidium, and Giardia. Each target was validated using custom designed pathogen specific oligonucleotides which were tested for under various conditions.
Scientific Focus Area: Biomedical Engineering and Biophysics
This page was last updated on Friday, March 26, 2021