A Spectrometer-on-Chip for the detection of COVID-19

26 July, 2020

Newsight Imaging and Sheba Medical Center to identify and classify evidence of coronavirus in the body in less than a second, by spectral analysis of a sample of fluid – blood serum or saliva

A pilot program has been launched for a rapid COVID-19 detection test, employing a revolutionary device that uses light waves to analyze molecular content. The Israeli Newsight Imaging is collaborating with Sheba Medical Center to identify and classify evidence of coronavirus in the body in less than a second, using a sample of fluid – blood serum or saliva. Concrete results of the trial are expected by this September.

Newsight has received Sheba Medical Center’s IRB Ethics (“Helsinki”) Committee approval to conduct a pilot program for rapid COVID-19 detection tests. The tests will be conducted using SpectraLIT kit, based on Newsight’s Spectrometer-on-Chip. Spectral technology for virus detection is not a new scientific discovery. However, Newsight found a way to bring an expensive device (hundreds of thousands of dollars), to the size of a single cost-effective chip.

Rapid check of 1024 Spectral Channels

Newsight’s device (about the size of a computer mouse) simultaneously checks 1024 spectral channels, currently in the visible light spectrum of 400-700 nm. During the next few months, the company plans to present a device that will be capable of examining a spectral profile in wavelengths of up to 1100 nm. Initial feasibility studies at Sheba Medical Center have shown an ability to separate between alpha-coronaviruses (Alpha-CoV) and beta-coronaviruses (Beta-CoV), with an accuracy close to 100%.

Additional feasibility studies conducted on blood serum samples of people infected with the Dengue virus, were found to be extremely accurate. Newsight and Sheba’s ARC Innovation Center intend to establish a joint company that will make the solutions commercially available to the medical community around the globe.

Newsight Imaging provides CMOS Image sensor chips for 3D machine vision and spectral analysis, protected by 14 US and EU patents. The SpectraLIT Spectrometer is based on NSP2020: A small size chip, which detects light and provides 12bit digital vectors, representing the light intensity of each wavelength. The NSP2020 is able to acquire up-to 40,000 spectral profiles per second, providing ultra-fast analysis of the spectral features of the tested material.

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