ABOUT THE PROJECT

This project seeks to develop a sensitive and specific diagnostic test for dengue virus that will allow medical personnel to monitor patient infections more accurately.

NOTABLE ACHIEVEMENTS (October 2016)

  • Researchers have produced DENV E-glycoprotein, virus like particles and NS1 proteins for all 4 DENV serotypes.
  • Antibodies with broad reactivity against all four serotypes as well as serotype specific antibodies have been identified and a shortlist of antibody candidates have been selected for recognition of purified DENV virus.

PROJECT UPDATE (April 2016)

Canadian researchers are working with Indian clinicians, academics, and industry to develop a point of care diagnostic and prognostic test for Dengue using synthetic antibody technology.

RESEARCH ABSTRACT

Dengue fever is a fast-spreading insect-borne virus that puts at risk of infection 3.6 billion people worldwide, including in India where outbreaks occur every year. The lack of mosquito control, high population density and poor hygiene living conditions cause the disease to spread rapidly, taking lives and decreasing economic output significantly. Moreover, infection of an individual by multiple serotypes of the virus increases the severity of the infection and the need for hospitalization. In this project, we propose to develop a sensitive and specific diagnostic test for the dengue virus, capable of detecting single or multiple serotypes, allowing medical personnel to monitor patient infections more accurately and consequently, decide on the appropriate course of treatment. The goal is to produce a test that is quick, robust and can be offered in a field setting with minimal technical expertise. We will use our expertise in synthetic antibody engineering to develop an ELISA-based strip assay for the detection of dengue viral serotypes, that can be read with a hand-held device. Our high throughput methodology allows the development of high affinity, high specificity antibodies with the desired profile of serotype recognition. This joint program will involve the expertise of both Canadian and Indian scientists and take advantage of cost-efficient access to reagents and other tools. It will benefit both Canada, where screening technology is needed to monitor mobile populations coming from high-dish countries, and India where dengue infection is prevalent. It will also provide training and collaboration opportunities for researchers in both countries.

Project Team

Dr. Sachdev Sidhu, University of Toronto
Dr. Amitabha Chaudhuri, SciGenom Labs
Dr. Jason Moffat, University of Toronto
Dr. Jonathan Lai, Albert Einstein College of Medicine
Dr. Frederic Fellouse, University of Toronto
Dr. Sangeetha Mohan, SciGenom Labs

Partners

University of Toronto
SciGenom Labs
Albert Einstein College of Medicine

Current Number of Students: 7

Key Outcomes

Publications: 1
Presentations: 1