The nominating institute Nanyang Technological University on the breakthrough:
Infectious agents, including viruses like SARS-CoV-2, can wreak havoc on societies. Frequent testing is essential to minimise their transmission. However, viruses can mutate, edit, or shuffle their genetic material, causing diagnostic assays to fail. To overcome the problem, Meng How Tan has developed a robust and sensitive diagnostic test that can detect SARS-CoV-2 even when the viral sequence has evolved or has been edited.