Commenting on the news, Linda Glennie, Director of Research at MRF said, “Meningitis and sepsis are very difficult to identify in the early stages, but can rapidly progress to become life-threatening, leaving a very short window of time for treatment. This is why rapid diagnosis is vital to save lives.
“We have previously funded research into the role of IL-6 in severe sepsis due to meningococcal infection - an important cause of both meningitis and sepsis. IL-6 is an indicator of both sepsis and bacterial meningitis, meaning the test in development could potentially help diagnose both conditions.
“There are other potential indicators of meningitis and sepsis, but this research is really encouraging as it appears to work much quicker than some existing hospital tests, which can take up to 72 hours, and the aim is for it to work with just a pin-prick sample of blood, so pre-hospital point of care testing could be feasible.
“A simple, rapid diagnostic test for meningitis and sepsis is crucial and long overdue and we look forward to seeing how this research develops.”