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11 Mar 2020 - 13 Mar 2020

Rapid Diagnostic Tests Set to Distinguish Coronavirus from Other Respiratory Infections

By LabMedica International staff writers
Posted on 13 Feb 2020
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Image: Vivalytic: The molecular diagnostics point-of-care analyzer (Photo courtesy of Randox Laboratories)
Image: Vivalytic: The molecular diagnostics point-of-care analyzer (Photo courtesy of Randox Laboratories)
The global health diagnostics company Randox Laboratories (Crumlin, United Kingdom) has announced the imminent release of a rapid diagnostic test for the 2019-nCoV strain of coronavirus.

A novel coronavirus of zoonotic origin, 2019-nCoV was recently identified in patients with acute respiratory disease. This virus, which has now been designated Covid-19 (for Corona Virus Disease-19) by the World Health Organization, is genetically similar to SARS coronavirus and bat SARS-like coronaviruses. The outbreak was initially detected in Wuhan, a major city of China, but has subsequently been detected in other provinces of China as well as in several other countries. At this time more than 40,000 cases of the disease have been confirmed with nearly 1000 fatalities.

Signs of infection are highly non-specific and these include respiratory symptoms, fever, cough, dyspnea, and viral pneumonia. Currently, experts estimate that only about 5.1% of coronavirus cases in Wuhan have actually been diagnosed clinically. Therefore, diagnostic tests specific for this infection are urgently needed for confirming suspected cases, screening patients, and conducting virus surveillance.

In this regard Randox Laboratories, has adapted its patented Biochip Array Technology (BAT) for diagnosis of coronavirus. BAT is an innovative multiplexing technology which is utilized within the cartridge aspect of an autoanalyzer platform. The Biochip allows for the simultaneous detection of multiple analytes from a single sample.

The 2019-nCoV test, which was to be introduced at the February 3, 2020 - February 6, 2020, MEDLAB Middle East exhibit in Dubai, will be available for the Vivalytic point-of-care analyzer, with turnaround time of three hours, and for the Evidence Investigator autoanalyzer with five hours turnaround time. An additional enhanced multiplex array will also include tests for other respiratory viruses, which display similar symptoms.

Dr. Peter FitzGerald, managing director of Randox Laboratories, said, “Current technologies for the diagnosis of coronavirus are designed simply to detect the presence or lack of 2019-nCoV, and therefore neglect to differentiate between this strain and other respiratory infections. Whilst we are very quickly developing an efficient novel test for this new strain of coronavirus, we are therefore also working on an extended Viral Respiratory Infection Array that will test simultaneously for 2019-nCoV and a range of other viruses. This will eliminate the need for multiple back-and-forth tests before the root cause of symptoms is found, and empower clinicians to make fast and informed decisions.”

Related Links:
Randox Laboratories
Coronavirus Test Available at Randox Laboratories - Randox Laboratories



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