Veredus Laboratories, Singapore, has partnered with STMicroelectronics, Geneva to offer VereFlu™, a portable lab-on-chip application for rapid detection of major influenza types at the point of need.

The molecular diagnostic test detects infection within 2 hours, providing genetic information of the infection that traditionally would take days or weeks to learn, and its level of automation lets users outside traditional labs perform tests where needed.

The test marries the semiconductor company’s In-Check™ microfluidic lab-on-chip technology with the diagnostics company’s bio-application capability, integrating two molecular biological applications in a fingernail-sized disposable chip that identifies and differentiates human strains of Influenza A and B viruses, including the Avian Flu strain H5N1. The platform lets users process and analyze minute patient samples of human blood, serum, or respiratory swabs.

Veredus officials say the test will help health care professionals monitor mutations of flu viruses and identify the main strain of the season, which may help increase the effectiveness of flu vaccinations and reduce public health risks associated with the onset of a new flu virus.

The companies have jointly established the Bio-Application Lab, Singapore, where they will work on developing new biomedical applications in areas such as infectious diseases, oncology, and heart disease markers.