A new test involving CRISPR technology could help with early diagnosis of Huanglongbing (HLB). A study recently published in the journal Phytopathology details how a new diagnostic test can detect the HLB causing bacteria known as CLas at a much greater sensitivity level. The research was conducted by scientists from Penn State University and the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
One of the authors noted that current detection methods such as trained canines and qPCR testing can be ineffective for early detection purposes. The researchers adapted a CRISPR system to develop a diagnostic test based on a platform known as DETECTR. The new method that was developed was found to have a sensitivity level 100 to 1,000 times greater than other diagnostic tests. The authors note that the improvements in detection sensitivity and flexibility of the DETECTR technology make the test a potentially suitable tool for early detection of CLas in infected regions.
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