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Vale COVID-19 Challenge Presents Solution for Mass Testing

Mining News - Published on Fri, 22 May 2020

Image Source: Neoprospecta Vale COVID-19 Challenge
Neoprospecta, one of the winners of the COVID-19 Challenge, presented a coronavirus mass testing solution that allows several people to be tested simultaneously. This method is similar to the regular RT-PCR (Polymerase Chain Reaction) test. The difference is that it allows 16 people to be tested at once; it increases the sampling, reduces costs, and ensures accurate results. While the rapid tests identify the immune system’s response to the infection, the RT-PCR test is used to detect the virus’s genetic material in the human body. This way, it is possible to identify people who have been infected with COVID-19 but show no symptoms. Neoprospecta founder and director Fernando Oliveira said “One of the major challenges of this disease is the presence of asymptomatic carriers, which undermines control interventions. But, since we need to screen a considerable number of people, our challenge was to develop a molecular analysis approach that would allow us to meet this demand. We must identify the infected individuals before the body manifests the symptoms of the virus, then promptly isolate them to reduce the risk of transmission to other people.”

South Korea, Singapore, New Zealand, and Germany have all achieved greater control and lower rates of Sars-Cov2 infection using this mass testing method. These tests can be used not only with the general population, but as a risk management tool in busy companies and operational/industrial environments. Its ability to detect the virus's presence early after infection enables taking appropriate measures in time, in addition to improving management of the safety of the process, people, and society.

Polymerase chain reaction is an amplification technique used in molecular biology for cloning the specific or targeted parts of a DNA sequence to generate thousands to millions of copies of DNA of interest.

COVID-19 Challenge is an initiative launched by Vale, Hospital Israelita Albert Einstein, and Rede Mater Dei de Saúde with the aim of supporting open innovation solutions that mitigate the impacts of the new coronavirus in society. The initiative received 1,858 solutions and approximately US$ 1 million will be allocated to nine Brazilian and two Canadian solutions. Click here to learn more.

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Posted By : Yogender Pancholi on Fri, 22 May 2020
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