US-based company GenTegra has announced a study on the development and characterisation of two novel Covid-19 saliva sample collection tube devices.

GenTegra Saliva Transport Medium (GTR-STM) and direct-into-PCR GenTegra GTR-STMdk are devices that eradicate the dilution of virus levels in saliva samples, without compromising on safety and convenience while transporting saliva samples at ambient conditions.

Using GenTegra’s Active Chemical Protection (ACP) technology, the dried transport media formulation in the devices offers substantial improvements in SARS-CoV-2 viral RNA stability and RT-PCR process efficiency for Covid-19 saliva testing.

GTR-STMdk alleviates the requirement for expensive and time-consuming RNA extraction, cutting down the turnaround time needed for delivering test results.

GenTegra president Bob Barrett said: “By creating a dry transport media formulation of our proven ACP technology, we have eliminated many of the risks and error-prone steps involved with current Covid-19 saliva collection products.

“Most importantly, eliminating the addition of a liquid sample stabiliser may improve low copy number detection, and may address some of the concerns of potential false negatives due to sample dilution.

“This may be especially true when testing asymptomatic populations where viral load in saliva may be low and when multiple samples are pooled for greater testing efficiency.”

ACP technology has a combination of small molecule inhibitors, antioxidants, metal chelators and anti-microbials to offer total protection for SARS-CoV-2 and viral RNA at ambient temperatures.

Furthermore, the company noted that proprietary ACP chemistry lowers saliva viscosity, inactivates contaminating RNases and bacteria, and aids in sample sterilisation at 95°C to make the sample harmless for lab personnel as well as testing.

ACP chemistry is guanidinium free and well-suited with lab automation and self-sterilising PCR instrumentation.