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Aptamers in the pursuit of COVID-19 management

PERSPECTIVE

OpenAccess

ISSN: 2514-3247
Aptamers 
(2020), Vol 4, in press

Published online: 06 July 2020

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Lucia Wang 1 and Maureen McKeague 1,2

1 Department of Pharmacology and Therapeutics, McGill University, 3655 Prom. Sir William Osler, Montreal, Quebec, H3G 1Y6, Canada

2 Department of Chemistry, McGill University, 801 Sherbrooke Street West, Montreal, Quebec, H3A 0B8, Canada

*Correspondence to: Maureen McKeague, Email: maureen.mckeague@mcgill.ca


Received: 16 June 2020 | Revised: 26 June 2020 | Accepted: 27 June 2020


© Copyright The Author(s). This is an open access article, published under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0). This license permits non-commercial use, distribution and reproduction of this article, provided the original work is appropriately acknowledged, with correct citation details.


As COVID-19, caused by SARS-CoV-2, continues to affect millions of people worldwide, the race to find new tools for diagnostics, treatment, and prevention has become more pertinent than ever to quell its global impact. To date, (June 26, 2020) there have been over 9.6 million cases of COVID-19 across the globe, with nearly 486,000 deaths. Thus, a framework of testing, treatments, and most importantly vaccines is being developed to create a comprehensive management protocol.

While vaccination is the ultimate goal as it would prevent another pandemic, testing and treatment procedures for those currently affected remain the more pressing issue. To address this need, companies worldwide have been coming out with PCR and ELISA based commercial diagnostic kits for the rapid determination of SARS-CoV-2 infection status. Yet, despite these tried and true methods having held their own as reliable analytical tools since the late 20th century, aptamers may be useful in this pandemic as they can be used both to test for and treat COVID-19, especially as traditional methods have proved to be limited by resource and equipment availability. Indeed several members of the aptamer community around the globe are working hard to select new aptamers or develop robust aptamer-based applications in the context of SARS-CoV-2 detection…

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