Smart indicators to monitor virus specimens

Smart indicators to monitor virus specimens

News |
By Julien Happich

The Timestrip Virus Specimen Transport (VST) series has been specially formulated to provide a clear indication when key temperature levels are exceeded. These indicators monitor when specimens – including coronavirus – have been stored for too long and outside the required temperature range for reliable testing. Four products make up the VST range, and together they form an essential tool to support hospitals, surgeries and medical laboratories in storing and transporting virus specimens correctly, and preserving their integrity.

A virus specimen’s exposure to temperature over time is critical to its lifetime, so the VST series includes a unique integrating indicator, the ‘VST TTI’, which mirrors the accumulated time-temperature history of the virus specimen during transport and storage. Virology specimen collection guidelines state that most viruses remain stable at 4°C for 2-3 days, so VST TTI is effective with a wide range of virus types. Designed to meet specific regulations, the TTI label will indicate when 72 hrs of chilled storage has elapsed by showing a clear visual discard window. At high temperatures, the label will show the discard indication within just a few hours.

Scientists and clinicians know that bacteria and viruses deteriorate much more quickly as temperatures increase, and also as exposure time increases. For example, at 50-55°C, coronavirus becomes non-infectious within just a few hours. The VST range of indicators includes a product specifically for monitoring temperatures exceeding 53°C. The ‘VST 0°C’ – that will reliably track a thawing event. If the ambient temperature rises above freezing, the indicator will show the cumulative period of thawing. Timestrip ‘VST Fridge Combi’ includes two indicators. One unique element indicates when a period of 72 hrs. has passed during chilled conditions (2-8°C), aligning with FDA / WHO regulations. The other element provides a temperature breach indication, giving a clear signal when conditions have exceeded the regulated upper chilled limit of 8°C/46°F during storage or transport.

Timestrip –

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