CRISPR-based diagnostics: expanding the toolbox against COVID-19

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A promising new tool uses CRISPR technology and, uniquely, the Cas13d enzyme to provide faster results than PCR tests for detecting SARS-Cov-2.

Researchers at The University of California, San Diego (CA, USA) have developed a diagnostic tool called Sensitive Enzymatic Nucleic Acid Sequence Reporter (SENSR) using CRISPR technology to identify pathogens from their DNA or RNA sequences. PCR tests need specialist facilities and long reaction times which limit their application; SENSR promises the development of more practical, simple technologies for detection.

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