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Article

Development of a Clinical MALDI-ToF Mass Spectrometry Assay for SARS-CoV-2: Rational Design and Multi-Disciplinary Team Work

1
MAPSciences the iLAB, Stannard Way, Bedford MK44 3RZ, UK
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Laboratory of Viral Zoonotics, Department of Veterinary Medicine, Cambridge University, Madingley Road, Cambridge CB3 0ES, UK
3
NISAD, Medicon Village, SE-223 81 Lund, Sweden
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Diagnostics 2020, 10(10), 746; https://doi.org/10.3390/diagnostics10100746
Received: 28 August 2020 / Revised: 22 September 2020 / Accepted: 22 September 2020 / Published: 24 September 2020
The COVID-19 pandemic caused by the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus has stretched national testing capacities to breaking points in almost all countries of the world. The need to rapidly screen vast numbers of a country’s population in order to control the spread of the infection is paramount. However, the logistical requirement for reagent supply (and associated cost) of RT-PCR based testing (the current front-line test) have been hugely problematic. Mass spectrometry-based methods using swab and gargle samples have been reported with promise, but have not approached the task from a systematic analysis of the entire diagnostic process. Here, the pipeline from sample processing, the biological characteristics of the pathogen in human biofluid, the downstream bio- and physical-chemistry and the all-important data processing with clinical interpretation and reporting, are carefully compiled into a single high-throughput and reproducible rapid process. Utilizing MALDI-ToF mass spectrometric detection to viral envelope glycoproteins in a systems biology-multidisciplinary team approach, we have achieved a multifaceted clinical MALDI ToF MS screening test, primarily (but not limited to) SARS-CoV-2, with direct application to other future epidemics/pandemics that may arise. The clinical information generated not only includes SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus detection–(Spike protein fragments S1, S2b, S2a peaks), but other respiratory viral infections detected as well as an assessment of generalised oral upper respiratory immune response (elevated total Ig light chain peak) and a measure of the viral immune response (elevated intensity of IgA heavy chain peak). The advantages of the method include; (1) ease of sampling, (2) speed of analysis, and much reduced cost of testing. These features reveal the diagnostic utility of MALDI-ToF mass spectrometry as a powerful and economically attractive global solution View Full-Text
Keywords: biosecurity; COVID-19; SARS-CoV-2; screening; diagnostic test; MALDI-ToF MS biosecurity; COVID-19; SARS-CoV-2; screening; diagnostic test; MALDI-ToF MS
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MDPI and ACS Style

Iles, R.K.; Zmuidinaite, R.; Iles, J.K.; Carnell, G.; Sampson, A.; Heeney, J.L. Development of a Clinical MALDI-ToF Mass Spectrometry Assay for SARS-CoV-2: Rational Design and Multi-Disciplinary Team Work. Diagnostics 2020, 10, 746. https://doi.org/10.3390/diagnostics10100746

AMA Style

Iles RK, Zmuidinaite R, Iles JK, Carnell G, Sampson A, Heeney JL. Development of a Clinical MALDI-ToF Mass Spectrometry Assay for SARS-CoV-2: Rational Design and Multi-Disciplinary Team Work. Diagnostics. 2020; 10(10):746. https://doi.org/10.3390/diagnostics10100746

Chicago/Turabian Style

Iles, Ray K., Raminta Zmuidinaite, Jason K. Iles, George Carnell, Alex Sampson, and Jonathan L. Heeney. 2020. "Development of a Clinical MALDI-ToF Mass Spectrometry Assay for SARS-CoV-2: Rational Design and Multi-Disciplinary Team Work" Diagnostics 10, no. 10: 746. https://doi.org/10.3390/diagnostics10100746

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