Spartan Bioscience is an Ottawa-based company that manufactures DNA testing kits. Spartan developed a way to conduct polymerase chain reaction (PCR) DNA testing within a small and portable kit for a competitive price, producing results within 45 minutes, on site. The company successfully applied this technology to water quality testing for Legionella. This solution, for which there are no known competitors, leaps ahead of the existing market, which has relied on sending samples for in-lab testing, a process that usually lasts approximately 10 days.
Spartan was recognized by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Ottawa for developing the world’s smallest on-demand DNA testing system. But existing standards for testing water quality only account for traditional laboratory testing methods. Spartan sought support from SCC to set standards for on-site, on-demand testing to allow buildings to test water and air systems more frequently, and with a higher degree of certainty. SCC can leverage Canadian expertise in standardization, entrench Canadian leadership in PCR applications, as well as promote and support amended standards in procurement specifications.