This week, Israeli company Virusight Diagnostic confirmed it had received European Union (EU) approval for its SpectraLIT rapid coronavirus test which gives results after 20 seconds.
The handheld device shines light through swab test samples and provides immediate results by determining the sample’s spectral signature, thereby removing the need for lab testing.
The system has now received European Medical Device Directive approval, allowing rollout across the EU. It is currently being piloted at 36 hospitals worldwide.
Virusight Diagnostic, a collaboration between Newsight Imaging and Sheba Medical Centre, has also developed a gargle test which eliminates the need for swabbing, using most of the same technology as the swab version.
Eli Assoolin, who led the development team, said he expects both the swab and gargle version of the test to be widely rolled out in airports in the coming months.
According to Assoolin, the artificial intelligence technology can be adapted to detect other pathogens: “Virusight’s artificial intelligence is actually a diagnostic platform for many potential cases of pathogen diagnosis, able to change the way the world deals with pandemics”.