Simple & cost-effective biological threat analysis with the BioThreat Alert
6th June 2019
Biological threat analysis made simple and cost-effective with the BioThreat Alert
An increasing risk to public safety
The risk that biological threats pose to public safety is growing. In particular, B. Anthracis (Anthrax) spores and powdered ricin are biological warfare agents that have the potential to cause extensive harm to populations.
Notably, the notorious anthrax attacks in 2001 (Amerithrax) killed five people and infected 17 others.
More recently, in October 2018, key political figures in the US, including the President, were sent letters that tested positive for ricin, a toxin that can be fatal to humans when only a few milligrams are inhaled.
In addition, ricin in a liquid form has been used for many years as a poison. It is evident that the ability to quickly and easily test suspect powders or surfaces for biological agents is a key requirement.
The key to detecting biological agents
Fast, accurate, and simple biothreat analysis can be performed in the field using Tetracore’s easy-to-use BioThreat Alert® lateral flow assays (LFA). The LFAs detect specified biological agents using technology that enables high specificity, portability and sensitivity, achieving results in up to 15 minutes.
The LFAs are available in Singleplex format, to test for one particular biological agent, and Multiplex format, covering a range of bacteria and toxin targets in one easy to use LFA.
Further advantages of the Multiplex and Singleplex BioThreat Alert® LFAs include their long shelf lives (two years for Multiplex LFAs and three years for Singleplex LFAs), the small amount of sample (~0.1 mL) required per test, the inbuilt control line for each test to ensure correct usage and their ease of interpretation by visual examination.
Tetracore’s LFAs detect the most common biological select agents: Anthrax, Ricin, Botulinum toxin (A&B), Plague, Abrin, Brucella, SEB, Tularemia and Orthopox.
Easy sample collection
Sample preparation is simple when using Tetracore’s C2T™ sample collection swab. The all-in-one, pen-style sampler contains a removable swab, a buffer solution in an ampoule within the pen and a re-sealable pipette end.
This allows the user to easily dispense the liquid sample onto the BioThreat Alert® LFA while also being able to either send the sample on to a government lab or disposing of the potentially contaminated sample in a controlled manner.
The swab can be used whilst wearing PPE, and can be easily resealed to ensure that the potentially dangerous sample is contained.