New field test for malaria drug resistance on horizon

Frederick Haselton | Via Lab Pulse | June 13, 2019

By altering the technical design of polymerase chain reaction (PCR) tests for malaria drug resistance, it’s possible to build a simpler, faster assay suitable for testing whole blood in the field, particularly in low-resource settings, Vanderbilt University researchers reported June 13 in a proof-of-principle study published online in the Journal of Molecular Diagnostics.


The study establishes the principle of a new approach, but it may take years for the test to be validated and broadly available. The most likely use for the technology would be in low-resource settings, said Frederick Haselton, PhD, who has patented the PCR instrument but not the underlying molecular biology tools, along with Nicholas Adams, PhD, both co-authors. These types of assays are usually vetted by the World Health Organization (WHO) and then rolled out on a country-by-country basis, Haselton explained in an email to… Continue reading.