Saliva tests

Corona saliva test: detect SARS-CoV-2 easily via saliva sample

Covid-19 rapid tests are one of the most important tools in the fight against the pandemic. But the tests are considered messy and require well-trained personnel. A much more convenient alternative is now available with the new “Corona Saliva Tests.” One now only needs a saliva sample, not a nasopharyngeal swab, for covid-19 detection. This makes the tests even easier and gentler to use.

Advantages and areas of application

Compared to a nasopharyngeal swab, saliva collection is neither difficult nor painful. This makes the novel saliva test kits particularly suitable for children and adolescents, the elderly, or people with disabilities. Saliva tests are also a great relief for the screening of employees, as the unpleasant scratching with the swab is no longer necessary. This increases acceptance in the workforce for regular testing.

Another advantage is that even lay people can perform a Covid-19 saliva test on their own. Unlike a nasopharyngeal swab, medical personnel are not necessarily needed. Laboratory infrastructure is also not usually required to evaluate saliva samples.

Covid-19 saliva tests offer the chance to detect infected individuals more quickly and thus break chains of infection at an early stage. They are useful wherever large groups of people regularly gather. In particular, the novel Covid-19 saliva tests are suitable for

  • Clinics, doctors’ offices and other medical facilities
  • Nursing homes
  • Schools and daycare centers
  • Cultural institutions such as cinemas, theaters, museums
  • All businesses and organizations where employees are to be tested on a regular basis

Types of SARS-CoV-2 sputum tests

Detection of coronavirus is possible in several ways. How the sample is taken – by nasopharyngeal swab or saliva sample – is basically irrelevant. The following types of SARS-CoV-2 saliva tests are currently available on the market:

Rapid Antigen Test

The Corona saliva tests currently available are predominantly rapid antigen tests. These require neither medical personnel nor a laboratory.

Antigen tests detect coronavirus using protein molecules that are typical of the pathogen. They work similarly to commercially available pregnancy tests. The sample material is mixed with a chemical reagent and then applied to a test strip. The result can be read visually after about 15 to 30 minutes.

Rapid antigen tests are easy to use and do not take long. This makes them well suited for serial testing of employees, patients, clients, or visitors. It should be noted that the result is not as reliable as that of laboratory tests. Particularly in the case of infected persons who carry few viruses, the antigen test sometimes fails.

PCR laboratory test

PCR testing is considered the gold standard in SARS-CoV-2 diagnostics. Unlike the antigen test, this test looks for genetic material (RNA) of the corona virus rather than proteins. To detect viral RNA, the sample material must be propagated under laboratory conditions in multiple cycles at varying temperatures.

PCR tests also work in principle with saliva samples, not just nasopharyngeal swabs. However, salivary PCR tests can be evaluated exclusively in the laboratory. Their advantage over standard tests is that laypersons can take the sample material on their own. There is no need for the unpleasant swabbing of the nose or throat.

RT-LAMP rapid test

This novel rapid test method detects the gene of the corona virus in the same way as a PCR test. A special method is used to amplify the genetic material, which works at constant temperature and does not require a laboratory. The saliva sample is heated to 65°C in an incubator and then mixed with chemical reagents. These indicate the result by a color change. The rapid test thus does not require a medical laboratory.

Corona saliva test: criteria when buying

Rapid tests are only useful if they are safe, reliable and easy to use. The following manufacturer specifications are important:


Sensitivity refers to how reliably the test detects infected individuals as such. A rapid antigen test is generally somewhat less sensitive than a PCR laboratory test. Desirable values are above 90 percent – whether saliva test or “conventional” rapid antigen test.


Specificity expresses how reliably healthy individuals are identified as such. A specificity of more than 99 percent is good. At a lower specificity, the rapid test produces a proportionate number of “false positives.”


Physicians and medical facilities can bill for SARS-CoV-2 tests under public health insurance. To do so, the tests must meet certain minimum criteria. The Federal Institute for Drugs and Medical Devices (BfArM) maintains a list of reimbursable Covid-19 rapid tests. This is, of course, continuously updated so that the novel “saliva test” systems can also be billed, provided they are of appropriate quality.

Storage conditions

Normally, SARS-CoV-19 rapid testss have no special storage requirements. They are keepable at room temperature and do not require refrigeration.

What to consider when using a saliva test

Collection of saliva samples is very simple compared with a nasopharyngeal swab and less prone to error: usually, the test subject simply spits into a small container for this purpose. Some testing systems also work with a tube or swab that is placed under the tongue for some time to collect the saliva.

To get a reliable result, it is usually recommended that you not smoke, eat or drink, or chew gum for half an hour before the test. Detailed instructions for specimen collection and interpretation are provided in the supplied instructions for use.

Buy certified SARS-CoV-2 saliva test kits online now

In addition to conventional SARS-CoV-2 rapid tests, we now offer the novel Corona saliva tests in our online store. All products are certified according to the applicable legal standards and therefore offer a high level of safety.

In line with current medical developments, we are constantly adding to our product range. We will be happy to inform you promptly about new products and other benefits! To do so, simply register on our portal and receive all important information regularly via Newsletter in your mailbox.