World’s First Rapid Saliva-Based Pregnancy Test Is Born

Salignostics’ founding team in Jerusalem. (Osnat Krasnansky)
Salignostics’ founding team in Jerusalem. (Osnat Krasnansky)

By Abigail Klein Leichman

Peeing on a stick will soon be as obsolete as the “rabbit test” thanks to SaliStick, a revolutionary saliva-based rapid pregnancy test kit.

The product has successfully completed clinical trials and thousands of analytical trials in Israel and is expected to receive the European Union’s CE Mark soon. Approval by the FDA could come next year.

SaliStick was developed by Jerusalem-based Salignostics based on its proprietary saliva-based hormone detection technology used in the company’s SaliCov rapid antigen saliva test kit to detect COVID-19, used widely in Europe and Africa.

SaliStick detects the pregnancy hormone β-hCG as early as the first day of a missed period.

“Saliva is the key to rapid diagnostics for a variety of medical reasons. Quintessentially it is the only noninvasive, easy, and hygienic means to detect hormones, viruses and even diseases,” said Guy Krief, Salignostics’ co-founder, deputy CEO and director of business development.

“We are delivering a product that completely removes the need for blood and urine samples when testing for pregnancy,” he said. “With SaliStick, we hope to empower women by making the discovery of pregnancy more dignified and inclusive.”

The company will display the new product at the Medica 2021 exhibition in Düsseldorf, Germany, this week.

Salignostics was founded in 2016 by Krief and four other PhDs: professor Aaron Palmon, former dean of Hebrew University’s dental school; Omer Deutsch; Yoav Neumann; and Raluca Cohen.

“Our vision is to transform the next generation of in-vitro diagnostics by developing easy, clean, safe, low-cost, accessible and reliable saliva-based products,” the company’s website says.

“Salistick is the first rapid saliva-based pregnancy test for a new and improved user-experience, accompanied by high accuracy for early pregnancy detection.”

Currently, there are two main types of pregnancy tests — urine tests and blood tests.

“Often, you’ll take a urine test at home with a home pregnancy test kit,” the Cleveland Clinic website states. “This type of test can be purchased over-the-counter (you don’t need a prescription from your healthcare provider) and is available in a variety of price ranges. Blood tests to check for pregnancy are done in your healthcare provider’s office. No matter what the reason [for a pregnancy test], if you ever have any questions about your test results, the best thing to do is reach out to your healthcare provider.

“A pregnancy can also be confirmed through an ultrasound. Later in a pregnancy, an ultrasound is actually used to not only look at your baby, but make sure the timeline of development matches the dates of your conception and missed period.

“If you think you could be pregnant, it’s a good idea to take a test and make sure,” the Cleveland Clinic says.

Produced in association with Israel21C.

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