The current Ebola outbreak is the worst ever recorded and at least 9,500 people have died of the disease since the epidemic began.
The diagnostic method is carried out by using a simple paper strip similar to a pregnancy test.
The new test can speed up the process of diagnosing Ebola, as well as other diseases such as yellow fever and dengue fever.
MIT’s device offers immense potential due to the fact that existing tests can take a day or two to confirm infection with Ebola diminishing the speed with which a patient can be isolated and treated.
“As we saw with the recent Ebola outbreak, sometimes people present with symptoms and it’s not clear what they have,”Kimberly Hamad-Schifferli, a visiting scientist in MIT’s Department of Mechanical Engineering and a member of the technical staff at MIT’s Lincoln Laboratory, said.
“We wanted to come up with a rapid diagnostic that could differentiate between different diseases,” she added.
The study on the new device was authored by Hamad-Schifferliand Lee Gehrke, the Hermann L.F. von Helmholtz Professor in MIT’s Institute for Medical Engineering and Science (IMES).