Point-of-care Detection of HIV Antibodies and RNA in Blood and Saliva

Period of Performance: 01/25/2015 - 12/31/2015


Phase 2 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Rheonix, Inc.
Ithaca, NY 14850
Principal Investigator


DESCRIPTION (provided by applicant): The global HIV/AIDS epidemic continues to be fueled by the large number of individuals who do not know that they are infected. The CDC is supporting programs to decrease this number by encouraging more frequent testing of all age groups as well as increasing the venues for testing including the recent FDA approval of an oral HIV Screening test for anti-HIV antibodies. That said, a reactive (i.e., positive) test still requies a confirmatory test that often requires a second visit to a health professional. Additionally, ther is a seroconversion window of many weeks from the time of infection until antibodies to the virus can be detected. In this interval HIV viral loads are at their highest levels, increasing the chance for transmission to other individuals. Over the past several years, Rheonix Inc. and NYU have been collaborating on a novel point-of-care device to simultaneously detect both anti-HIV antibodies and viral nucleic acid in less than 1 hour. Starting with a drop of blood or a saliva sample, we have been able to combine a screening test (antibody) using lateral flow with a confirmatory molecular test for viral RNA utilizing isothermal amplification (LAMP). Employing Rheonix's patented technology, the device being developed utilizes a microfluidic-based disposable CARD that can be simply operated with the push of a button to provide a yes/no result for both antibody and nucleic acid in less than 60 minutes on a device that is portable and practical for both small clinics or field use. The results from the present fast-track SBIR proposa will complete the development of this dual pathway device in 2 years utilizing our preliminary data on all aspects of this innovative approach. The impact of the dual pathway point-of-care approach will permit a test and treat program to rapidly identify infected individuals and accelerate their treatment, ultimately decreasing the viral burden in a community.