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Mobile Real Time PCR Device Enables COVID-19 Detection in Near-Patient Setting

By LabMedica International staff writers
Posted on 01 Aug 2022
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Image: Liberty16 Pro (Photo courtesy of Ubiquitome)
Image: Liberty16 Pro (Photo courtesy of Ubiquitome)

A mobile real time PCR device can expand COVID-19 testing capacity and enable pathogen detection with a multiplex assay at high speed, in addition to offering simplicity of use.

Ubiquitome Limited (Auckland, New Zealand) has unveiled its new COVID PCR testing tool named Liberty16 Pro that allows workplaces of up to 500 employees to conduct COVID-testing efficiently with a single, real time PCR device. Surveillance testing at onsite locations can give better early warning, as well as potentially being more cost effective than rapid antigen tests. Liberty16 Pro is an advanced version of Ubiquitome’s Liberty16 mobile real time PCR device which has FDA emergency use authorization for use with the Yale School of Public Health SalivaDirect SARS-CoV-2 assay for diagnostic purposes at certain designated CLIA laboratories.

The Liberty16 mobile PCR system had allowed workplaces to instigate surveillance - checking patients pre-admission, monitoring staff, splitting teams into shifts, and keeping vital supply chain services running. After training by Ubiquitome, many companies and organizations set up dedicated rooms on site and interpret sample results with ease through Ubiquitome's proprietary mobile phone app. Ubiquitome has now developed an advanced version of Liberty16 to expand testing capacity and enable pathogen detection with a multiplex assay and even greater speed - while retaining the existing simplicity of use. The Liberty16 and Liberty16 Pro are research use only devices, not for diagnostic purposes.

"The need for diagnostics that advance clinical care and public health has never been greater with the mutation of Omicron variants picking up speed," said Dr. Paul Pickering, Ubiquitome's CEO. "Developments in the Liberty16 Pro potentially expand testing capacity without sacrificing the assay's detection sensitivity, while further reducing test consumable costs and retaining the unique features which are best fit to a near-patient setting."

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