Low Cost Universal Optical DNA Rapid Detection System for Pathogens Including COVID-19
11 Feb 2021
OZ Optics offers an exceptionally affordable yet reliable optical DNA/detection system based on Loop-mediated isothermal amplification (LAMP). Much like polymerase chain reaction (PCR) amplification, LAMP is a highly sensitive method of DNA detection that creates millions to billions of copies of a target DNA from a minute amount of sample RNA or DNA. However unlike PCR, LAMP applies an isothermal process that does not require expensive and complex equipment, as well as time consuming thermal cycling. It is a more cost-effective and rapid system. LAMP is especially ideal for rapid diagnosis of pathogens or infectious diseases, with results usually within 30 minutes and for high viral loads less than 20 minutes.
The LAMPPY™ system uses an array of high powered LEDs, photodiodes and filters for real-time quantitative detection. Samples to be tested are first mixed with a solution of primers and enzymes as well as an intercalating dye, then dispensed in standard 0.1 mL PCR tubes with flat caps, commonly known as low-profile PCR tubes. Acceptable sample volumes can be between 5 to 125 μL (10–30 μL recommended). OZ Optics does not provide the solutions/kits. Instead, we collaborate with companies who make these solutions/kits for specific applications and pathogens. The instrument can work with many different solution kits for different pathogens. For that reason we consider it to be a universal DNA/ RNA detection system.
The standard system utilizes an excitation diode/filter combination emitting at 465–488 nm and a filter/detector combination for 500 nm to 590 nm light. This setup is compatible with many popular fluorescent dyes, including SYTO 9, SYBR Green and EvaGreen dyes. Solution kits using these or similar dyes can work with our instrument as-is. However, if the user wants to work with different dyes that utilize different wavelengths, OZ can provide well blocks with different filter combinations. The well blocks can be exchanged by the user, making the instrument extremely versatile.
The instrument heating system precisely monitors and controls the sample temperature, ensuring fast ramping, temperature uniformity, and accuracy across all samples. A spring-loaded lid heater prevents condensation within the caps of the tubes for reliable results. An option to preheat before running an experiment is available with a temperature range of 25°C to 85°C. For safety, a lock engages when a run begins. However, a safety override option is available to pause or stop an experiment and open the lid during a run. LEDs and fluorescence acquisition will pause when lid is open during an experiment but heaters can stay on. The lid button also functions as a status indicator light for the system. The accompanying software is intuitive and easy to use, providing real time quantitative measurements and fast setup.