The Urine Malaria Test kit is the first of its kind to diagnose the disease within 20 minutes. The kit won the inaugural 2015 Health Innovation Challenge Awards hosted in Lagos, Nigeria, in late October. The Urine Malaria Test kit is the first non-blood based tool for at-home or point-of-need diagnosis of malaria.
Fyodor, a US-based biotechnology firm founded by Nigerian Eddy Agbo, developed the Urine Malaria Test kit. The test kit is the biotech firm’s flagship product.
“The test process is simple: add patient urine into sample cup provided in kit; dip and leave UMT strip in the sample for 25 minutes; read result: one line indicates no malaria and two lines indicate malaria,” Eddy Agbo told The Nation.
Using a urine sample as little as five drops, the test kit delivers fast results, letting people know if they test positive for malaria. Because of its simplicity – no blood and no equipment – the test can be performed in low-resource contexts, enabling immediate, targeted treatment.
The kit is an important development in tackling malaria because rapid diagnosis is key to reducing the number of fatalities caused by undiscovered infections. Sub-Saharan Africa carries a disproportionately high share of the global malaria burden – the region is home to 89 per cent of malaria cases and 91 per cent of malaria deaths.
Fyodor reports that the Urine Malaria Test kit demonstrates equivalent performance when compared to commercially available blood-based rapid tests for the diagnosis of malaria.