About us

Rako Science is a company that was formed to develop surveillance testing at scale to protect New Zealand workers, business and vulnerable communities. The science and systems we use are non-invasive, sensitive, repeatable and high quality. Rako allows society to operate better with smarter risk management in the era of COVID-19 uncertainty.

The approach

Current notification time for the saliva test is only six to 12 hours whereas turnaround time for currently available tests is around two to three days, or longer. The test produces rapid results at costs significantly below current alternatives such as nasal swabs. Through cost and speed advantages, the saliva tests can increase access to testing and control spread of the virus by identifying pre- symptomatic and asymptomatic carriers.

This test was designed by Urbana-Champaign researchers Martin Burke, Paul Hergenrother, Timothy Fan, Fadi Alnaji, Christopher Brooke, Kelsie Green, Robin Holland, Diana Rose Ranoa, and Leyi Wang, who created a testing and strategy they named SHIELD. RAKO Science is performing the Validation Study of this test in New Zealand. 

This test is currently being used in three universities within the University of Illinois System. RAKO Science is working to deploy this asymptomatic testing at scale in New Zealand.

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