Oxford University Scientists Develop 5-minute Rapid Antigen Test For COVID-19

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Oxford University scientists claimed to have developed a rapid antigen test to diagnose coronavirus infection in less than five minutes.

Revealing the results of the test on Thursday, researchers said they hope to start making the testing devices early next year.

The Oxfordshire-based University will have to wait for six months to get it approved.

The rapid antigen test is ideal for use in mass testing at places like airports and business organizations.

According to a pre-print study released by the researchers, the device will be able to detect and distinguish the novel coronavirus from other viruses with high accuracy.

"Our method quickly detects intact virus particles. It would be simple, extremely rapid, and cost-effective," said Achilles Kapanidis, a Professor at Oxford's Department of Physics.

Meanwhile, the World Health Organization said that coronavirus transmission is still happening mostly in households.

Answering questions at a social media Q&A session Wednesday, WHO infectious disease expert Maria Van Kerkhove said that if an infected person is treated at home, "There's the possibility that the virus will spread within the household."

"Most transmission is actually still happening in households. This we knew from the beginning, from the outbreaks that were detected in China. And one of the most important things that they did in China was recognizing this, and then isolating individuals who are infected outside of the home," she added.

The top WHO official made it a point that high risk group patients such as senior citizens and those who have any underlying conditions should be given medical care in a medical facility. "The reason for that is because you are at a higher risk of developing severe disease and of death," according to Maria Van Kerkhove.

The World Health Organization said the recent surge of cases in European countries raises great concern.

There are 38.4 million Covid-19 cases and 1.09 million deaths globally, according to Johns Hopkins University data.

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