Distinguished Professor Dayong Jin FTSE
Distinguished Professor Dayong Jin is an acclaimed scientist who has dedicated himself to using light waves and particles to achieve single molecule sensitivity. He develops biomedical, analytical, and imaging devices that will detect diseases much earlier, including cancer.
Collaboration is key in Dayong’s vision. He established the cross-disciplinary research institute IBMD along with an outstanding international network from academia and industry to transform advances in photonics and materials into health care technologies.
Recently, his team developed a saliva test for COVID-19 that detects the virus within 10 minutes, which can be used earlier in the virus’s infection cycle.
Dayong has received many prestigious awards for his inspiring work.
_ _ _ _ _
Role and organisation (at time of election)
Australian Laureate Fellow
Director, Institute for Biomedical Materials & Devices
Dayong was elected a Fellow of the Academy in 2021.
Professor Dayong Jin FTSE is an acclaimed scientist who has dedicated himself to using light waves and particles to achieve single molecule sensitivity. He develops biomedical, analytical, and imaging devices that will detect diseases much earlier, including cancer.
Professor Jin was elected as an ATSE Fellow in 2021 and continues to undertake inspiring work.
His recent research has had a large focus on single molecule detections. This technology has a range of potential uses, but Professor Jin and his team shifted their focus towards COVID-19 research when the pandemic began reshaping the world.
The team adapted novel ‘Super Dot’ technology to develop an innovative new COVID-19 test – Virulizer.
Virulizer uses saliva instead of a nasal swab. This method is much more comfortable, can detect the virus more quickly than a traditional PCR test and is a thousand times more accurate than a rapid antigen test.
With the power to deliver results matching the reliability of a PCR test in 10 minutes or less, Virulizer has the ability to change how the world navigates COVID-19.
“This is going to be a game-changer — I strongly believe that,” Professor Jin said.
Due to its level of sensitivity, Virulizer is extremely effective at detecting COVID-19 in asymptomatic individuals. As saliva contains lower virus quantities than the nose, the high sensitivity offered by Virulizer allows the low abundant virus antigen molecules to be detected during the early stages of developing a COVID-19 infection.
“With the sensitivity of our optical technology, we aim to identify the viral protein in saliva from asymptomatic but already infectious patients. This would allow for much more effective contact tracing and rapid discovery of pockets of disease before it is transmitted to others,” Professor Jin says.
The development of Virulizer is the result of a collaboration between Professor Jin’s team at the University of Technology Sydney and Western Australian manufacturer Alcolizer.
Professor Jin recalls the excitement felt at midnight on Friday 1 August 2020, when the team received the first results from the pilot project.
“We got excited then that the technology had the potential to be useful. When we showed this result to Alcolizer, they got excited too and they began to get more involved.”
Production rollout is scheduled for mid-2022, with the second clinical trial currently underway in WA. Tests can be made available to early use customers if emergency use authorisation is given.
Professor Jin and his team are now working on developing super-resolution imaging techniques to monitor the pathogenic functions of emerging variants. They are also investigating immune responses to viral infection to better understand the likelihood of Long COVID.
#FellowFriday — Distinguished Professor Dayong Jin was featured on 25 March 2022