Local researchers have been awarded a grant for an innovative COVID-19 test. The method, called the Colab Score, assesses the changes the virus causes in human blood.
Catharina Hospital’s been using this test since the first wave last year. Compared to the RT-PCR test, which it’s used alongside, this method quickly provides results. Scientists at the Eindhoven University of Technology (TU/e) and Catharina Hospital developed it.
In recent times, it has become vital for emergency rooms (ER) to know whether an admitted patient is corona positive. It’s customary to run a quick blood scan of incoming patients. Combining these two requirements, researchers from the hospital and Tu/e proposed looking for specific changes in blood values.
“We wondered if there were some subtle changes in the blood that are characteristic of COVID-19,” says Catharina Hospital’s Dr Arjen-Kars Boer. Indeed, that has turned out to be possible.
The test is being successfully used in several hospitals in the Netherlands. The next step would be to introduce it across Europe. This will be done in collaboration with Gaston Medical.
“This is quite a challenge. Every hospital carries out different tests in the ER”. A European subsidy from the COVID-X program has been granted for this research. It is also aimed to further improve the sensitivity of the CoLab score in detecting COVID-19.
Editor: Melinda Walraven