Lateral Flow Assays offer simple, low-cost, portable, and rapid detection of of an analyte. These paper-based tests are can be performed in the field or at home with minimal training or equipment. In about 10 or 15 minutes after a sample is applied, a visual indicator denotes a positive result, negative result, or test error. This indicator usually takes the form of lines that must be visually interpreted by the operator.
LFAs are convenient tests but lack sensitivity relative to laboratory test. For example, the visual detection limit of THC in commercially available LFAs is normally limited to greater than 25ng/ml, insufficient for proper enforcement of workplace regulations and drug-impaired driving laws.
We have built a low-cost thermo-photonic technology to more accurately analyze commercially available low-cost LFAs. Our system offers detection and quantification of THC down to 2ng/ml with 96% accuracy.
Our photothermal detection technology employs laser stimulation and infrared sensors to more accurately measure the results of the assay. These methods are not limit to drug detection, but can be used in a wide variety of applications where antibody conjugates are already available.
Recently, our reader has been used in detection and quantification of the SARS-CoV-2 Antibody. Our proof-of-concept results with humanized monoclonal anti-SARS-CoV-2 Spike receptor-binding domain (RBD) IgG demonstrate that the thermo-photonic technology can detect and quantify antibody concentrations within the clinically relevant range and with a limit of detection of 0.1μg /ml.