This spring 2021 Berkeley Engineer magazine story shows off how scientists working on basic research sometimes stumble onto discoveries that address real-world problems.
Swab your nose, plunge the sample into a reaction chamber, insert the chamber into a cellphone-based device, then press “go.” In as little as 15 minutes, you’ll likely know whether you’re positive for COVID-19, with an unprecedented combination of speed and accuracy.... So where can you go to get this test? “The point is, you wouldn’t have to go anywhere,” says bioengineering professor Dan Fletcher, who developed the test in partnership with Berkeley’s Nobel Prize-winning biochemist Jennifer Doudna and UCSF professor of medicine Melanie Ott, director of the Gladstone Institute of Virology. “The whole goal is that it would be a point-of-care test — it would be right where people are.” Read more.