Ultra-Low-Cost Loa Loa Paper Diagnostic Device
Andrew Steckl and Giovanni Pauletti of the University of Cincinnati in the U.S. will develop a paper-based urine test for the rapid non-invasive detection of the filarial Roundworm Loa loa, which causes the painful skin and eye disease loaisis, commonly found in western and central Africa. Current diagnostic approaches are invasive, involving visual detection of larvae in tissue or blood samples. The approach here utilizes the potential effect of parasite-released hormones found in the urine of infected individuals on the viscosity of animal blood spotted onto filter paper. The diagnostic test will be easy to perform and is projected to be inexpensive to manufacture.