The partners in the Viralert initiative aimed to create two program lines for testing. One aiming at improving the test strategies for the virus when no antibodies are present yet. Second route is implementing tests that test for the antigens when the virus is gone but immunity is there in case a person has recovered from the virus.

Scalable test for virus

To identify if a person is infected with a virus even before a person is sick it is very important to have a very sensitive, specific and fast test. Most tests around are based on PCR based chemistry. These tests have a proven track record but are quite labor intensive if it comes to the sample prep. Time to result is hours. In the meantime people that have been in contact with this person can continue to spread the virus. The faster the test the less spreading of a virus.

To get the exponential factor of virus spreading down the amount of possible contacts a person has before he or she was diagnosed with the virus the better it is. We need to push R0 < 1.

Scalable test for immunity

Testing for immunity is necessary when a person has been infected in the past but does not carry the virus anymore. It is clear from data from China that in most cases the virus has fully disappeared after about two weeks. The only way to know if this person has been infected by the virus is to test for the antibodies in blood. Two types of antibody’s are required to monitor.

A scalable test that is quick, cheap and has a very low instance of false positives is required to screen the public for immunity.

Viralert Initiative

Viralert Partners


Axxicon, Design, development and manufacturing of polymer microfluidic consumables
Demcon, Medical Systems
Enzyre, Near patient diagnostics
Findest, AI-powered technology scouting
Fris & Fruitig, Software made for healthcare. GGD, UMCG, CWZ
Future Diagnostics, In vitro diagnostic assay development
HCM Medical, Contract manufacturer of biomaterials
Helvoet, High precision injection moulding
Lionix International, Integrated optics biosensing
Micronit, Lab-on-a-chip microfluidics
Moveshelf, Secure web applications and machine learning
NanoBio, Executing applied research at the interface of nano- and microtechnology and life sciences
Nytor, Molecular diagnostic assay development
Open Up, Marketing and communication strategy
PathoFinder, State-of-the-art multiplex PCR technologies
Spektrax, Nanotechnology based ultra rapid COVID-19 testkits
Surfix, Expert in nanocoatings for Micro- and Nanodevices
VyCap, Solutions for the identification and isolation of single cells
Xablu, Leader in cross-platform mobile app development and consultancy.

Nanotechnology Organisations

MinacNed, association for micro and nanotechnology
Nano4Society, eco system for nanotechnology


  • Saxion University of Applied Sciences
  • TU Delft
  • TU Eindhoven
  • University of Twente
  • Wageningen University & Research


Dr. Aart van Amerongen 
BioSensing and Diagnostics. Rapid multi-analyte assays, microarray lateral flow assays, microarray ELISAs

prof. Albert van den Berg
Micro- and nanofluidics. Lab-on-a-chip

prof. Jurriaan Huskens
Supramolecular Chemistry & Nanofabrication

prof. Martin Bennink
Executing applied research at the interface of nano- and microtechnology and life sciences

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The Viralert initiative is a partnership of companies and universities, founded by: