Overview & numbers
We are facing a once in a century global crisis. Lives and livelihoods across the world have been disrupted. The economic well-being of every individual is at risk too, due to lock-downs and social distancing.
Until a vaccine is developed, regular testing on a massive scale is necessary to allow people to work and live safely. This has inspired us to create CONTAIN, whose goal is to enable rapid scale-up of testing capacity and make it accessible and affordable to everyone. A shortage of suitable (BSL2+) laboratory space has limited the global testing response; CONTAIN units allow a nimble response to the shifting geography of the outbreak.
How it works
A 40ft high-cube shipping container is converted for BSL2+ laboratory specifications, while preserving its structural integrity and transportation accreditation. The design allows CONTAIN units to be shipped to any location rapidly, and requires only flat, solid ground and utilities (electricity, water) to be operation-ready. A data management system tracks samples through the automated testing process using QR codes and unique sample IDs. Testing follows the gold standard for COVID-19 testing (RT-qPCR), and is carried out in a three-stage process: Station A (sample handling), Station B (RNA extraction), and Station C (qPCR). Both Station B and C are automated using Opentrons OT2 liquid handling robots, allowing a single operator to run the laboratory and deliver 92 tests every 45 minutes (more than 2,400 tests every 24 hours). The data management system automatically interprets qPCR data and securely communicates results to the patient or healthcare provider.