Development of rapid and cost-effective top-loading device for the detection of anti-SARS-CoV-2 IgG/IgM antibodies

Infection with SARS-CoV-2, the Betacoronavirus, caused a pandemic that affected the globe negatively. The gold method, RT-PCR, can detect SARS-CoV-2 but it is time-consuming and needs sophisticated equipment and professional personnel. On the other hand, rapid tests offer fast results and can detect anti-SARS-CoV-2 antibodies (Abs). The aim of this study is to develop a new rapid and cost-effective method for the detection of anti-SARS-CoV-2 IgG/IgM Abs. A new top-loading detection device was developed and composed of a small piece of plastic (25 × 25 × 0.5 mm) with an opening in the center, a piece of nitrocellulose (NC) membrane enough to block the opening from one side and adhesive tape to affix the NC to the plastic piece. The NC is blotted with anti-human IgG/IgM and rabbit serum.

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Fig: Gold nanoparticle synthesis. (A) gold chloride solution; (B) after the formation of AuNPs; (C) SEM image showing well-dispersed colloidal AuNPs.

The device was evaluated against a commercially available IgG/IgM ELISA detection kit using normal, Covid-19-positive, HCV, HBV, and Cytomegalovirus-positive sera. Outcomes demonstrated simplicity, reproducibility, and accuracy of the new device and results can be obtained in less than 5 min. We anticipate our developed assay method to be used widely in point of care before deciding on the use of expensive nucleic acid assays.

Ibrahim, E.H., Ghramh, H.A. & Kilany, M. Development of rapid and cost-effective top-loading device for the detection of anti-SARS-CoV-2 IgG/IgM antibodies. Sci Rep 11, 14926 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-021-94444-6

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