Singapore’s Breathonix has said a clinical trial of its COVID-19 breathalyzer test was able to achieve at least 90% accuracy after screening participants on-site for 60 seconds.The company’s test uses mass spectrometry to analyze the thousands of volatile organic compounds that people exhale with every breath, to establish a specific signal among those with an active coronavirus infection.
Using a machine learning algorithm, this generates a “bio-fingerprint of COVID-19,” said co-founder and CEO Jia Zhunan. “Based on more than six years of research at the National University of Singapore, we have developed [a] highly sophisticated proprietary breath sampling technique and analytical method to achieve high accuracy, sensitivity and specificity.”
Green-light for AstraZeneca COVID-19 Vaccine Trials
Chilean President Sebastian Pinera said on Wednesday the country’s health regulator had given the go-ahead for clinical trials of AstraZeneca PLC’s COVID-19 vaccine.Pinera said the AstraZeneca trial would follow one by America’s Johnson & Johnson that is already underway and another by China’s Sinovac, whose first vaccine doses arrived in Chile on Wednesday.
He said Chile had been working “for months” to ensure sufficient and timely access to COVID vaccines, and hoped to start rolling them out to vulnerable populations “in the first few months of next year.”“We all know that a safe, effective and readily-available vaccine to all those who need it will be a huge contribution to the fight against Coronavirus,” he said.Pinera said Chile had signed a purchase agreement with Pfizer Inc and Germany’s BioNTech SE for 10 million doses of the vaccine they are jointly developing, and was working on similar agreements with AstraZeneca, Johnson & Johnson and Sinovac.