The Zika virus (ZIKV) is an emerging infectious agent with severe socio-economic impact due to its potential detrimental effects on congenital malformation. However, accurate ZIKV diagnosis is complicated due to its overlapping symptoms with dengue fever, another viral disease prevalent in Southeast Asia. Moreover, standard laboratory techniques such as PCR and ELISA are laborious, time-consuming, require expensive instrumentation, and cost-ineffective in large-scale screening of undifferentiated febrile illnesses suspected of Zika infection. This project aims to develop a large-scale manufactured rapid diagnostic test (RDT) kit for the fast and accurate detection of ZIKV in point-of-care (POC) settings. The RDT will be inexpensive, user-friendly, and the results can be read by the naked eye within 15 minutes without additional instrumentation. The RDT can achieve sensitive and specific detection of the ZIKV non-structural 1 (NS1) antigen and anti-ZIKV IgG/IgM, without cross-reaction with the dengue virus (DENV), and will be essential for effective disease management.
In this collaboration between the National Centre for Infectious Diseases (NCID) and NanoBio Lab (NBL), the team aims to deliver optimized, stable, and large-scale produced Zika RDTs that have been clinically verified/validated, and ready for adoption as lab-developed tests.
Principal Investigator: Prof. Leo Yee Sin
Institution: Tan Tock Seng Hospital / National Centre for Infectious Diseases
NHIC Ref: NHIC-I2D-1812214