Biosensor Assay for Avian Influenza Detection

Period of Performance: 02/20/2008 - 05/20/2010

$750K

Phase 2 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Luna Innovations, Inc.
301 1st St Suite 200
Roanoke, VA 24011
Principal Investigator

Abstract

As a counter-measure to bioterrorism, the objective of this project is to provide soldiers with early detection and identification of pathogenic viruses that can cross the species barrier. Luna Innovations Incorporated develops, tests, and optimizes an assay for marking any strains of human influenza A or avian influenza A virus, including mutant strains that can transmit between these species. The assay uses nanoparticles to detect both low pathogenic and highly pathogenic avian influenza virus that has become humanized due to natural antigenic drift. Importantly, this assay will provide early detection of an avian influenza virus strain deliberately engineered to evade conventional detection methods and cross the species barrier. Competing viral identification assays often become ineffective as the virus mutates or is genetically altered.