19-Xolution, a team of researchers from BIOTEC-NSTDA and the Faculty of Tropical Medicine, Mahidol University, was among 20 finalist teams advancing in the rapid COVID testing competition launched by the XPRIZE Foundation aiming to create innovative, scalable COVID-19 testing solutions to help society safely return to everyday activities.

The solution proposed by the 19-Xolution team is a rapid COVID-19 colorimetric detection kit employing loop-mediated isothermal amplification (LAMP) technique to amplify genetic materials of SARS-CoV-2, the causative of COVID-19. The test is a simple one-step method and the result, as indicated by the color change, can be visualized with naked eyes.

Finalist teams will have to send their testing kits and protocols to laboratories designated by XPRIZE for clinical validation. Top five teams will be announced in February 2021. The top five teams will advance to the deployment phase to administer tests. Each team that successfully completes the deployment phase will be rewarded an additional USD 500,000.