FentAlert™: A Field Operator-Friendly Solution for the Rapid and Safe Detection of Fentanyl

Alan Smith
FentAlert™ Product Manager

Contact Alan

In 2021, the Irregular Warfare Technical Support Directorate (IWTSD), on behalf of the Department of Defense, sought a field operator-friendly solution for the rapid detection of fentanyl. At that time, synthetic opioid detection relied upon the use of either external laboratory equipment or field detection kits with multiple reagents and buffers. Sample collection required the handling of the suspected opioid, increasing the risk of potential operator exposure. Field operators needed an easy-to-use detection system that could be used while wearing PPE and returned fast results in time-critical operational environments to ensure the safety of others.

Designed with field operators in mind. FentAlert™ can be operated in all levels of PPE with clear positive or negative indication in under 3 minutes.

With funding provided by the U.S. Navy, Signature Science chemists and engineers answered the need by developing a self-contained, single-use lateral flow immunoassay device prototype for the detection of fentanyl pharmaceutical-based agents. The prototype was demonstrated at the Defense Threat Reduction Agency’s Chemical Biological Operational Analysis events in 2022 and 2023. With valuable end user feedback and internal investment, Signature Science has optimized the prototype device and now offers the capability in a commercial product: FentAlert™. FentAlert™ can be operated in all levels of PPE and provides a presumptive field test indicating a clear positive or negative response for the presence of fentanyl in under 3 minutes.

How FentAlert™ Works

Illustration showing 5 steps to using FentAlert™. 1. Twist counter-clockwise to expose swab. 2. Use swab tip to sample. 3. Reinsert and twist clockwise until reservoir is punctured. 4. Keep device horizontal for 1-3 minutes as result displays on Test Strip. 5. Interpret results ( a thin and a thick red bar indicates "Negative"; a single thick red par indicates "Positive"; and a single thin red bar indicates "Invalid"

Physical Features

Dimensions13 cm tube
Weight10.76 grams
OperabilityFully operable in all levels of PPE

Sampling & Analysis

Sample IntroductionSample with chisel tip swab; Analyze in sealed reservoir
Sample TypeSolid, liquid
Analysis TimePositive or Negative results in 1–3 minutes

You can Order FentAlert™ Today

Want more information about FentAlert™?

NOTE: This test (assay) provides only a preliminary qualitative result. Use a certified laboratory to confirm your results. Do not use this test for any products for human consumption. FentAlert™ is not FDA approved nor is it to be used to test human specimens. No clinical claims are made that FentAlert™ can mitigate or prevent disease. FentAlert™ is not to be used as a Drugs of Abuse Tests for human samples. The product is intended for use only by Governmental agencies engaged in field operations to determine whether a suspect material represents a hazard. FentAlert™ may only be possessed and used in accordance with state laws, as applicable.