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Salivary Detection of Dengue Virus NS1 Protein with a Label-Free Immunosensor for Early Dengue Diagnosis.

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Dengue virus (DENV) is a highly pathogenic, arthropod-borne virus transmitted between people by Aedes mosquitoes. Despite efforts to prevent global spread, the potential for DENV epidemics is increasing world-wide. Annually, 3.6 billion people are at risk of infection. With no licensed vaccine, early diagnosis of dengue infection is critical for clinical management and patient survival. Detection of DENV non-structural protein 1 (NS1) is a clinically accepted biomarker for the early detection of DENV infection. Unfortunately, virtually all of the laboratory and commercial DENV NS1 diagnostic methods require a blood draw for sample analysis, limiting point-of-care diagnostics and decreases patient willingness. Alternatively, NS1 in human saliva has been identified for the potential early diagnosis of DENV infection. The collection of saliva is simple, non-invasive, painless, and inexpensive, even by minimally trained personnel. In this study, we present a label-free chemiresistive immunosensor for the detection of the DENV NS1 protein utilizing a network of single-walled carbon nanotubes functionalized with anti-dengue NS1 monoclonal antibodies. NS1 was successfully detected in adulterated artificial human saliva over the range of clinically relevant concentrations with high sensitivity and selectivity. It has potential application in clinical diagnosis and the ease of collection allows for self-testing, even within the home.

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