Insight into the development of the Respiratory Mask with an Integrated Corona Test – with Dr. Cornelia Hettrich

Corona tests are an important component of the measures aimed at containing the spreading of SARS-CoV-2. The standard test procedures do have their disadvantages, however. In a joint project between Fraunhofer IZI-BB and Fraunhofer IAP, a team headed by Dr. Cornelia Hettrich is working on possibilities to make a test procedure possible without the need for a smear.

The Corona test: this is already a part of the everyday lives of the personnel in schools, day care centres, hospitals and nursing facilities. The rapid (antigen) test carried out by qualified personnel does have a disadvantage, however, as it requires a smear to be taken from the nose and throat, which many find unpleasant. In order to compensate this disadvantage, a team headed by Dr. Cornelia Hettrich of the Fraunhofer Institute for Cell Therapy and Immunology IZI, Department of Bio-analytics and Bio-processes IZI-BB, is working on possibilities to facilitate this test procedure. Their approach to this is thereby quite simple: a sensor is to be directly integrated into a respiratory mask and there will measure and analyse the viral load in the exhaled breath of the wearers continuously. For even if the persons concerned do not display any symptoms, the viral load in their breath is already sufficient to prove that they are infected with SARS-CoV-2. The test result would thus be available immediately and possible without a smear from the nose or throat.

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