Sudbury·Audio

COVID-19 testing device is sampling Sudbury's wastewater

Scientists in Sudbury have just received money to help them test for COVID-19 in wastewater.

Researcher says the sequencer should take 4 to 6 hours to get a result.

A Sudbury researcher says information collected from city wastewater can help determine if there are hot spots in areas we don't know about. (Shutterstock / Bangkoker)

Scientists in Sudbury have received money to help them test for COVID-19 in wastewater.

The research project now has $50,000 to buy a small sequencer that can fit in the palm of the hand — and will give out results in just a few hours.

Gustavo Ybazeta, who works with the Health Sciences North Research Institute in Sudbury, says the information collected can help determine if there are hot spots in the city that we don't know about.

Ybazeta says, in that case, they can alert others. "[Like saying], hey guys, you will need to pay attention to this particular area ... where we are seeing more particles of the virus."

And it may help give city leaders clues about levels of the virus, and any re-opening or lock down measures that are under consideration.

The equipment is so easily transportable that researchers "can move it anywhere, [like] farther in the north, in places where it is difficult access for normal technologies or methodologies," he said.

Ybazeta says the sequencer should take 4 to 6 hours to get a result.

Testing is being done to see if COVID can be found in the sewer water in Sudbury. That could help determine if there are hot spots in the city. We heard more from Gustavo Ybazeta who works with the Health Sciences North Research Institute in Sudbury. 7:49

Comments

To encourage thoughtful and respectful conversations, first and last names will appear with each submission to CBC/Radio-Canada's online communities (except in children and youth-oriented communities). Pseudonyms will no longer be permitted.

By submitting a comment, you accept that CBC has the right to reproduce and publish that comment in whole or in part, in any manner CBC chooses. Please note that CBC does not endorse the opinions expressed in comments. Comments on this story are moderated according to our Submission Guidelines. Comments are welcome while open. We reserve the right to close comments at any time.

now