The SARS-COV-2 Spike Protein Binds Sialic Acids, and Enables Rapid Detection in a Lateral Flow Point of Care Diagnostic Device

There is an urgent need to understand the behavior of novel coronavirus (SARS-COV-2), which is the causative agent of COVID-19, and to develop point-of-care diagnostics. Here, a glyconanoparticle platform is used to discover that N-acetyl neuraminic acid has high affinity towards the SARS-COV-2 spike glycoprotein, demonstrating its glycan-binding function. Optimization of the particle size and coating enabled detection of the spike glycoprotein in lateral flow and showed selectivity over the SARS-COV-1 spike protein. Using a viral particle mimic, paper-based lateral flow detection was demonstrated in under 30 minutes showing the potential of this system as a low-cost detection platform.