Press Release, March 26, 2020; Mologic Ltd
Mologic and partners begin validation process for COVID-19 point-of-need diagnostic test
Mologic Ltd, a leading developer of lateral flow and rapid diagnostic technologies, today announced that it has initiated early validation of COVID-19 point-of-need diagnostic tests with the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine and St George’s, University of London.
The availability of fast, reliable diagnostics for COVID-19 has been identified as one of the critical opportunities to support the control of the pandemic and “flatten the curve” of cases worldwide.
The accelerated development of the test has been made possible by funding from UK Aid, as part of the £46 million the UK government has announced so far for international coronavirus (COVID-19) prevention and research.
Mologic’s early prototypes of antibody tests have made it possible to begin a process of optimisation. Leading laboratories on each continent will evaluate these different prototypes to independently assess their performance.
While the assessment and optimisation will be expedited, it is vital that any prototype device for COVID-19 is subject to rigorous validation before it is made available for use in the global pandemic response.
Following rapid assessments in the UK, the technology will be shipped to global validation partners including the Institut Pasteur de Dakar in Senegal, La Jolla Institute for Immunology in the United States, the Wuhan Institute of Virology in China, the University of Malaya in Malaysia, the Institute for Health Science Research Germans Trias I Pujol (IGTP) in Spain, and the Oswaldo Cruz Foundation (Fiocruz) in Brazil.
Once ready, the device will allow users to test for exposure to the virus at home, in the community, or in the clinic, providing a result within 10 minutes, without the need for special training, electricity or a laboratory. The company is working in close partnership with the Institut Pasteur de Dakar to validate the COVID-19 test and manufacture at diaTROPiX, a new facility in Senegal. This will be the first time that a diagnostic kit created in the UK will be jointly manufactured in Africa, ensuring tests are available in settings with limited access to laboratory facilities.
Mologic has taken the decision to sell the diagnostic test at cost to low-income settings to ensure affected countries have access to the kits during the global emergency. This will allow high-quality diagnostics to be produced in low-income settings with the aim of ensuring that the test is available to all.
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