ERADA Technology Alliance Ltd (ERADA), pioneers of innovative, rapid diagnostic solutions for early detection of infectious diseases, have announced the imminent launch of a world first diagnostic saliva test for malaria.
The saliva-based diagnostic tool, to be marketed by ERADA as a Saliva-based Malaria Asymptomatic and Asexual Rapid Test (SMAART) for subclinical infection, is set to transform malaria detection worldwide in the fight against one of the globe’s most deadly diseases. Malaria, globally kills an estimated 435,000 each year, mostly children under the age of five, mainly in Sub-Saharan Africa.
The SMAART detection tool is the invention of leading, U.S based, researchers in the field of malaria diagnostics whose study is published worldwide today, January 2 in the international journal, Science Translational Medicine
ERADA’s innovative solution is easy- to-use, as it includes a simple device for standardized collection of saliva that can be implemented in the community by health care professionals, teachers and parents; contrasting with invasive blood tests, which must be administered by trained clinicians. Other drawbacks to blood tests include cultural ‘blood taboos’ existing in many countries whilst, furthermore, skin-prick tests are often stressful for children and parents.
Existing tests using blood may be invariably less reliable because subclinical infections with malaria-carrying parasites can be missed, leading some patients to come down with the disease, without knowing they have already been infected. ERADA’s
SMAART-1, easy-to-use saliva test, leads to early detection, treatment and prevention of the disease as well as reducing further transmission of malaria.
ERADA’s SMAART saliva test detects a unique biomarker from female parasites circulating in an infected human who is asymptomatic, but is carrying the parasite and likely to come down with malaria within a week. Early, subclinical detection of malaria is crucial to malaria eradication because individuals who carry the parasite without exhibiting symptoms, known as carriers, are the reservoir that leads to infection of mosquitoes and transmission of the disease. Detecting the presence of the parasite before symptoms appear can save lives because malaria visible disease only erupts a couple of days after the mosquito bite.