Scientists from Canada’s Queens University and the University of British Columbia have developed a device to assess the contagiousness of various coronavirus variants, Report informs, citing bioRxiv.
The biosensor evaluates the interaction of a coronavirus spike and an ACE2 enzyme, through which the virus enters the cell.
Experts attached one luciferase protein fragment to the spike and the enzyme. When they interact, the protein starts to glow. By the intensity of the light, the researchers could determine how many spikes had bound to ACE2. The whole procedure takes no more than 30 minutes.
Scientists note that the device can also be used in the development of drugs for COVID-19. So, the characteristic glow will not be observed if the medicine is effective.