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GenMark’s Combination Test for COVID-19, Flu, and Common Respiratory Illnesses Receives FDA EUA

By LabMedica International staff writers
Posted on 12 Oct 2020
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GenMark’s Combination Test for COVID-19, Flu, and Common Respiratory Illnesses Receives FDA EUA
GenMark’s Combination Test for COVID-19, Flu, and Common Respiratory Illnesses Receives FDA EUA
GenMark Diagnostics, Inc. (Carlsbad, CA, USA) has received the US Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) for the company’s ePlex Respiratory Pathogen Panel 2 (RP2 Panel).

Some COVID-19 patients are infected with more than one pathogen, known as coinfection, making accurate identification of the cause of infection even more important. Further, sepsis – a life-threatening response to infection – can be a complication for hospitalized COVID-19 patients, and many receive antibiotics inappropriately. Rapid molecular tests help address the double burden of infections by quickly identifying or ruling out the responsible pathogen or pathogens to enable proper treatment, minimizing unnecessary use of antibiotics, which can save lives and reduce antibiotic resistance.

GenMark’s RP2 Panel provides results in less than two hours for more than 20 viruses and bacteria that cause common respiratory infections with similar symptoms, including COVID-19, flu, bronchitis and the common cold. A multiplex – or syndromic – test, the RP2 Panel provides rapid results for infections with similar symptoms such as fever, cough and body aches, which will be essential in preparing for fall and winter as the flu season coincides with the ongoing risk of COVID-19.

The RP2 Panel includes a new, simplified workflow making it even easier for labs to run the test. Incorporating COVID-19 into the existing ePlex Respiratory Pathogen (RP) Panel streamlines the diagnostic process for hospitals by allowing them to check for multiple pathogens with a single test, saving time and resources and improving bed management. A study at two acute large tertiary care hospitals demonstrated that using the ePlex RP Panel in the Emergency Department led to earlier patient results, which resulted in an 8.4% reduction in hospital admissions.

The ePlex RP2 Panel is also approved as a tool for clinical diagnosis in the European market, having received CE Mark in September. The ePlex RP2 Panel is designed for use with the company’s ePlex system, along with the ePlex RP Panel and Blood Culture Identification (BCID) Panels (gram-positive, gram-negative and fungal pathogens), all of which have been cleared by the FDA and achieved CE Mark.

“COVID-19 is placing a spotlight on the importance of fast, comprehensive molecular testing,” said Scott Mendel, President and CEO of GenMark. “While we can’t predict what cold and flu season is going to look like this year, we know that we have to arm healthcare providers with the necessary tools to quickly and accurately diagnose the cause of infections in seriously ill patients, so syndromic testing is going to be critical.”


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GenMark Diagnostics, Inc.


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