The mask has become part of our daily life. It is therefore very intelligent to think that, in addition to helping us prevent the spread of the virus, it can help us identify its presence.
This is the thinking of some scientists of theKyoto University, who have developed masks that can "light up" when they reveal the presence of the coronavirus.
The project started with the analysis of ostrich antibodies, which are particularly powerful and resistant. By studying the defense mechanisms of the ostriches, the doctors worked on the construction of a removable filter placed inside the mask.
When the filter is sprayed with a chemical liquid and exposed to ultraviolet light, it glows in the presence of the virus.
The veracity of the project was demonstrated by a series of researches carried out on patients, who wore the masks for 8 hours.
The idea of the "ostrich" mask
The leader of the project Yasuhiro Tsukamoto, he started working on the mask when he realized the powerful immune system of ostriches.
I realized that the secret to longevity is that it is resistant to infectious diseases with its incredible immunity and resilience, so I began to seriously research ostrich antibodies.Yasuhiro Tsukamoto
To be able to create antibodies against the coronavirus in the ostrich, scientists injected the birds with the virus's spike protein. They then extracted the antibodies from the egg yolk of the baby ostriches and bound them to the mask filters using polylactic acid.
Compared to antibodies produced by smaller animals (mice, rabbits, etc.), ostrich antibodies cost less than $ 1.000 per gram and can be collected in about two weeks.
According to Tsukamoto, the ostrich antibody project will make the mask even more useful and functional.
Above all, it will transform it into an affordable and accessible means of identifying the virus for all.
"It is a practical and inexpensive device that prevents the invasion of the virus Covid-19 in the human body", he has declared.
"If virus infection can be detected by inserting a mouth filter that carries an ostrich antibody into a 'disposable mask' that is used every day around the world, non-symptomatic infected people can be more easily identified.. "
At the moment, ultraviolet light is required to illuminate the mask. However, the scientists plan to develop bezels that glow in the light of a telephone.