Coupling Sensitive Nucleic Acid Amplification with Commercial Pregnancy Test Strips

Yan Du, Arti Pothukuchy, Jimmy D. Gollihar, Armin Nourani, Bingling Li, Andrew D. Ellington

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

87 Scopus citations


The detection of nucleic acid biomarkers for point-of-care (POC) diagnostics is currently limited by technical complexity, cost, and time constraints. To overcome these shortcomings, we have combined loop-mediated isothermal amplification (LAMP), programmable toehold-mediated strand-exchange signal transduction, and standard pregnancy test strips. The incorporation of an engineered hCG–SNAP fusion reporter protein (human chorionic gonadotropin-O6-alkylguanine-DNA alkyltransferase) led to LAMP-to-hCG signal transduction on low-cost, commercially available pregnancy test strips. Our assay reliably detected as few as 20 copies of Ebola virus templates in both human serum and saliva and could be adapted to distinguish a common melanoma-associated SNP allele (BRAF V600E) from the wild-type sequence. The methods described are completely generalizable to many nucleic acid biomarkers, and could be adapted to provide POC diagnostics for a range of pathogens.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)992-996
Number of pages5
JournalAngewandte Chemie - International Edition
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jan 19 2017


  • SNAP protein
  • human chorionic gonadotropin
  • loop-mediated isothermal amplification (LAMP)
  • nucleic acid amplification
  • pregnancy test strips

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Catalysis
  • Chemistry(all)


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