Watch CBS News

Test Created By Maryland Biotech Company Aims To Determine Severity Of Individual COVID Cases

BALTIMORE (WJZ) -- Testing remains a key factor in reaching the end of the COVID-19 pandemic. But, what happens if you test positive for the virus?

For many, it's a waiting game and an unsettling experience in finding out the possible range of symptoms That's an issue one Maryland-based biotech company is hoping to solve.

IES Life Sciences and the University of Maryland, Eastern Shore are teaming up to determine how severe a COVID-19 case could become and even what type of symptoms a patient could have.

"I hope that it will eliminate the fear that is associated with getting a positive [COVID] test," Dr. Robert Figliozzi, Director of Research and Development at IES Life Sciences, said.

Here's how it works. Once a patient tests positive, another test would be given using nasal swabs. The results would then measure the immune response to COVID-19 in patients.

"So it's a new way to diagnose diseases," David Spiegel, CEO of IES Life Sciences, said.

With that knowledge, developers believe doctors should be able to better focus their resources on the patients who need them most.

"You need to plan for what's going to happen, you need to know, do I need ventilators? Do I need ICU's or can I send the patient home and it's going to be a very mild case," Spiegel said.

To help get this product to the market and into doctors' hands, developers have partnered with the crowdfunding platform Music Beats Cancer.

"Music Beats Cancer was designed to support entrepreneurs, like myself, who've got a great idea in hand but they simply don't have the requisite funds to move forward," Mona Jhaveri, Founder of Music Beats Cancer, said.

While the end goal for this innovation is to save lives, for Spiegel, it means much more.

"Back in January, on Saturday, my cousin died from COVID," Spiegel said. "On Sunday, my mother died, and I don't want that to happen to anybody else."

The test is already patented and currently waiting for emergency use approval from the FDA.

The company's goal is to first roll out the tests in Maryland hospitals and then expand as broad as they can.

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.