The research team led by our faculty members Prof. Dr. Tanıl Kocagöz and Assoc. Prof. Dr. Özge Can developed a new method called "MyMagiCon", which increases the sensitivity of coronavirus tests by 20 times, paving the way for a faster and more reliable diagnosis of the disease. This new method, the first and only in the world, developed at Acıbadem University Incubation Center, increases the accuracy of test results by increasing the sensitivity of Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) and antigen tests, known as PCR tests.
It was developed for the diagnosis of tuberculosis
Head Of The Department Of Medical Microbiology At The School Of Medicine Prof. Dr. Tanıl Kocagöz stressed that they have adapted the method they have been working on for 1.5 years to the diagnosis of the Covid-19 virus in order to facilitate the diagnosis of tuberculosis with the project support they received from the “Foundation for Innovative New Diognostics " (www.finddx.org) which is a close supporter of the World Health Organization. Prof. Dr. Tanıl Kocagöz: “Thanks to the method, it is possible to give fast and accurate results of antigen tests. Our method will facilitate diagnosis made by filiation teams at airports, emergency departments of hospitals or homes. Because it increases the sensitivity of antigen tests, it will be possible to more accurately determine whether a person is infected within half an hour. In a short time, the tests will give more accurate results, which will allow isolation measures to be taken in people who are sick. In this way, it will also provide a significant gain in terms of control of the epidemic,”
It eliminates the risks of swab testings
This new method developed ends the swab collection made to diagnose Covid-19. Instead of the swab taken from the mouth and nose with cotton-like dacron at the tip, a few sips of water are used by the patient rinsing in his mouth. During mouthwash, the water touches the entire cavity of the throat and mouth, allowing much more virus to pass into the liquid to be tested than the swab. In the liquid concentrated in a tube, Covid-19 viruses quickly reveal themselves. Thus, it helps to increase the sensitivity of PCR and antigen tests, and increasing the accuracy of test results and getting them quickly. With the use of this new method, the risk of not getting enough virus for the test with the swab obtained from the nose and the risk of contaminating the patient with the Covid-19 virus to the people who take the swab is eliminated.
Current tests have shortcomings
“But both tests have their shortcomings. In PCR tests, the diagnosis is made with a swab taken from the patient's nose with a cotton swab. This is both a laborious method and increases the risk of infection to the healthcare worker taking the sample. Besides, the diagnosis time can take two days. The sensitivity of antigen tests produced to give fast results is not as high as PCR tests.” Explaining that they have developed an innovative method that increases the reliability of the results of these tests, Prof. Dr. Tanıl Kocagöz gave the following information:
"We have developed a tool that increases the sensitivity of both tests by 20 times, as well as allows easy sampling. In our method, it is enough for a person to take a sip or two of drinking water into his mouth, gargle and shake it in the mouth, and then put it in a container. Then we take 20 ml of liquid from this sample and put it in the MyMagiCon tube that we developed. The polymer inside the tube quickly attracts water and small molecules, making viruses concentrated. This process takes 5 minutes. A concentrated virus sample between polymer beads can be taken through a straw and easily used in PCR or antigen tests.”
150 million tests per month worldwide
Pointing out that the tendency to abandon the PCR test for diagnosis in the international arena and turn to antigen test has developed, Prof. Dr. Tanıl Kocagöz continued as follows: “For the diagnosis of coronavirus infection, 3 million tests are performed in our country and 150 million tests in the world every month. Although it shows signs of disease, sometimes the disease cannot be detected with PCR. The reason for this is that the sample amount taken from the patients is very small. With the dacron swab, very few samples, like 50 microliters, can be taken. This sample is diluted with 3 ml of water and a very small amount of 10 microliters is used in PCR. This can lead to the virus not being detected in samples with low presence. In our method, water contacts the entire oral cavity and throat during mouthwash and mouthwash, allowing more viruses to collect. The virus sample, which is then concentrated, increases the sensitivity of PCR tests. "
The first and unique in the world
Stating that the comparative studies of the method continue with the permission of the Ministry of Health, 25 researchers from the Clinical Microbiology Specialization Association (KLİMUD) and 12 centers in 8 provinces, Prof. Dr. Tanıl Kocagöz stressed that the method they developed together with Associate Prof. Dr. Özge Can, vice-dean of the Faculty of Engineering and Associate Professor in Medical Engineering, doesn’t have any precedent on Earth and thanked KLIMUD researchers who supported the study and he also thanked Lecturer Erkan Mozioğlu (PhD) who is one of the faculty members of Medical Biotechnology and graduate students Ece Aksoy and Betul Zehra Karakuş. He added that this method, which they developed as a result of their research at the incubation center of Acıbadem university, has been applied for national and international patents.
Prof. Dr. Tanıl Kocagöz pointed out that when their work was heard, they also began to receive a strong demand from the world " University-industry cooperation is important to meet this demand. We patented the method, applied for international protection. We have also attempted to apply for patents in other countries. Together with the investors who supported us in production, we produced and made the first examples of the product available,” he said. Detailed information of the R & D Company located in the incubation center of Acıbadem University www.gigabiomol.com and he said it could be taken from www.gigabiomol.com website.
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