A coronavirus breathalyzer is a diagnostic medical device enabling the user to determine with 90% or greater accuracy the presence of coronavirus in an exhaled breath. In Indonesia we have GeNose C19.
As of the first half of 2020, the idea of a practical coronavirus breathalyzer was concomitantly developed by unrelated research groups in the United States, Finland, Israel, Indonesia, England, Australia and Germany.
GeNose C19 or Gadjah Mada Electronic Nose is the newest medical device innovation designed by UGM to detect Covid-19 symptoms only using people’s breath rapidly. The tool developed by prof. Dr. Eng. Kuwat Triyana, M.Sc., and the team are currently proceeding to the diagnostic test phase before being mass-produced at the end of the year. “We want to set the price cheaper so that we can achieve the social value to help the society in overcoming Covid-19,” Kuwat told reporters.
After signing the memorandum of understanding for the GeNose C19 diagnostic test cooperation between UGM and Sardjito Hospital on Monday (26/10) at Sardjito Hospital Training Room, he conveyed this information.
He revealed that this tool had been permitted by the Ministry of Health to promptly undergo diagnostic tests at nine partner hospitals, Dr. Sardjito. The diagnostic test design was cross-sectional and triple blinded. Meanwhile, the subjects’ recruitment is multicenter consecutive sampling until balanced sample size is achieved between the positive Covid-19 and Covid-19 negative groups. In the initial stages of implementing GeNose C19, it will run as a Covid-19 screening tool. As it is being evaluated for accuracy, sensitivity, and specificity, it can hopefully be enhanced to a Covid-19 diagnostic tool equivalent to a swab / PCR.
GeNose C19, an instant Covid-19 detection tool developed by Gadjah Mada University in Yogyakarta, has secured a distribution license from the Health Ministry, paving its way for public use, the university’s development team said in a statement on Saturday. Unlike the existing tests, which use blood, saliva, or nasal fluid for detecting the novel coronavirus’s genetic marker, GeNose analyzes one’s breath using artificial intelligence technology, offering a much faster and cheaper process with comparable accuracy to the existing tests.
“Thank God, GeNose C19 has officially obtained a distribution permit from the Health Ministry and started to get recognition from the regulators for use in the handling of Covid-19,” Kuwat Triyana, the head of GeNose development team, said in a statement on Saturday. Kuwat said the ministry issued the license on Thursday after reviewing the team’s application. He said the project had been backed by the Research and Technology Ministry and the State Intelligence Agency (BIN), which would also be responsible for distributing GeNose’s first batch throughout the archipelago. “With 100 units of the first batch to be released, we expect to carry out 120 tests per device or a total of 12,000 people a day,” Kuwat said.
A GeNose device analyzes one’s breath to detect volatile organic compounds that signify the novel coronavirus infection. The team claimed earlier that the test was up to 95 accurate, similar to the antigen rapid test. Kuwat said the whole testing process would only take 3 minutes per person, making it ideal for screening many people in hospitals, train stations, or airports.
“Also, GeNose C19 is quite cheap, only around Rp. 15,000 to Rp 25,000 [$1-$1.8] per test. The result is swift, out in about 2 minutes [after taking sample], and do not require reagents or other chemicals,” Kuwat said. Kuwat said he hoped GeNose production capacity would increase soon. Mechanical part maker Yogya Presisi Tehnikatama Industri, electronics and sensors company Hikari Solusindo Sukses, pneumatic system maker Stechoq Robotika Indonesia, artificial intelligence developer Nanosense Instrument Indonesia, and a manufacturer Swayasa Prakarsa has formed a consortium for producing 1,000 GeNose units soon, he said. That would bump up the county’s testing capacity by 120,000 people per day, Kuwat said. “With the capacity to test that many people, it is expected we can find people infected with Covid-19 fast and allow them to isolate or seek treatment so that the chain of Covid-19 spread can be broken,” he said.
- Dian Kesumapramudya Nurputra, PhD., another member of the research team in UGM, said that each patient would take a breath sample and a nasopharyngeal swab sample in this diagnostic test simultaneously. She has a target estimation of about 1,500 samples tested for three weeks, 10 percent of which were Covid-19 positive patients. “We do not know whether the patient samples taken were positive or negative, so there would be no aberration in the diagnostic test study,” she said. She added that this tool could be distributed commercially by the end of the year if the testing process, scaling up, and further innovations were conducted. “I believe this is the result of multidisciplinary cooperation between scientists,” she added.
UGM Chancellor, Prof. Ir. Panut Mulyono, M.Eng, D.Eng., expressed his appreciation for the performance and contribution of Dr. Sardjito in conducting the GeNose C19 diagnostic test. “We genuinely hope that all parties can give support to the development of this innovative GeNose C19 product. Hence, the tool can be immediately used to alleviate and accelerate the handling of the Covid-19 pandemic as well as to recover Indonesia’s economy,” he hoped.
As is known, GeNose C19 is the first innovation in Indonesia to detect Covid-19 by breath sample that is next proceeded to the cloud computing system to obtain real-time diagnosis results. GeNose C19 can also run in parallel through a centralized diagnostic process so that data validity can be maintained for all connected devices. GeNose C19 had undergone a profiling test at the Bhayangkara Polda Yogyakarta Hospital and the Bambanglipuro Covid-19 Special Field Hospital, Bantul, with a system accuracy of more than 95 percent. In its implementation, GeNose C19 is expected to stop the Covid-19 transmission with the advantage of a lower cost per test. Because the test result is known to be more instant, it also can expedite the isolation decision. This electronic-based tool is easy to mass-produce because it uses parallel and massive Artificial Intelligence (AI) data analysis and has high specificity and sensitivity.
The 100 machines are set to be distributed to hospitals, airports and train stations, among other places. The research team also plans to distribute some of the machines to the National Disaster Mitigation Agency (BNPB). GeNose is not yet available for personal purchase. Kuwat said he hoped the machine would help the government address COVID-19, especially as it only took three minutes, including taking the breath sample, to get a result. “Having the 100 units, we’re hoping to conduct 120 tests per unit, which equals 12,000 people being tested in one day. “The estimated 120 tests per unit is based on an average of three minutes in process for each test, including taking the breath sample. Therefore, in one hour, we hope we can test 20 people, and if it is used effectively, each kit can be utilized up to six hours per day,” said Kuwat. Prior to receiving the ministry’s approval, GeNose had undergone a test that used 600 samples from the Yogyakarta Police’s Bhayangkara Hospital and a COVID-19 emergency hospital in Bambanglipuro, Yogyakarta, kompas.com reported on Saturday. With the accuracy rate is around 97 %