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GeneFirst develops real-time PCR tests for detection of the new coronavirus 2019-nCoV

Press Release, 3rd February 2020

In response to the recent outbreak of the new coronavirus 2019-nCoV, molecular diagnostics company, GeneFirst, has developed two real-time PCR tests for the detection of 2019-nCoV and other viruses. 

Building on the GeneFirst expertise in PCR technologies, these two tests will issue results in under 3 hours using standard molecular diagnostics equipment.  One of the tests is capable of detecting only the 2019-nCoV, useful for quick screening of patient samples, alleviating the mounting pressures on healthcare systems in coping with the outbreak. 

The second test is a multiplex assay which simultaneously detects 2019-nCoV as well as 17 other common viruses and bacteria including Influenza A, Influenza B, rhinovirus, RSV (respiratory Syncytial Virus), Chlamydophila pneumoniae, Mycoplasma pneumoniae, as well as other coronavirus strains.  The ability to differentiate these pathogens will allow for better patient management especially during the busy flu season where a number of hospital admittances may not be 2019-nCoV related. 

“Over the last few days we have seen a significant increase in the number of reported cases in China as well as the rest of the world.  Our tests will help to slow the spread of the virus by identifying patients that have the new strain in a quick and accurate manner with the additional benefit of being able to identify other flu- and cold-causing pathogens as well,” the CEO of GeneFirst, Guoliang Fu, said.

These tests, which are research use only (RUO), are designed to run on multiple molecular testing platforms which are commonly found in clinical laboratories and hospitals.  Operators can choose the number of tests to run at a time, making it suitable in both large and small laboratories. 

The Chinese authorities first identified the new coronavirus strain in January.  The outbreak, which started in the city of Wuhan, is declared a global emergency by the World Health Organisation (WHO).  According to the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control, 24 countries outside of China have reported cases of the new coronavirus, resulting in many countries imposing travel restrictions as a way to curb the spread of the virus. 

 

About GeneFirst

GeneFirst, based in Oxford, UK, is a molecular diagnostics company specialised in developing innovative solutions for infectious diseases and cancer testing using its suite of patented and proprietary breakthrough technologies.  The GeneFirst mission is to provide simple, reliable and effective molecular solutions to aid the accurate diagnosis of diseases and improvement of patient management.

For more information please contact:

Winnie Wu

Chief Operations Officer

+44 (0) 1865 407 098

winnie.wu@genefirst.com

 

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