Oxford University, Hong Kong-based Prenetics and the Oxford Center for Advanced Research in Suzhou (OSCAR) have begun a new collaboration to further develop rapid molecular testing for infectious diseases.
OxLAMP technology is behind Oxford University’s rapid COVID-19 test, which can detect the presence of COVID-19 without the use of a traditional laboratory within 20 minutes.
The test also boasts 96% sensitivity and 99% specificity and is deployed at many airports around the world, including London Heathrow Airport.
So far, a rapid test for SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, has received CE-IVD approval in Europe and the Medicines and Health Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) in the UK.
Now the University of Oxford, Prenetics and OSCAR are working to advance rapid testing technology for application to other infectious diseases, although the partners have not revealed their specific targets.
In a three-year, multi-million-dollar collaboration, Oxford-based researchers and the Prenetics’ Innovation Technology Center (ITC), located on the OSCAR campus in Suzhou, will work to upgrade existing technology to quickly test for new indications.
The new collaboration follows after Prenetics acquired testing company COVID-19 last year to test OXSED from Oxford University.
“Our new collaboration with Oxford University and OSCAR is our commitment to continuous investment in research and development, and by establishing our own Innovation Technology Center we believe it will make profound discoveries in molecular diagnostics,” said Danny Yeung, co-founder and CEO of Prenetike Group .
“We also expect that in the next 3 years, our technology center will house more top researchers in Suzhou and Oxford. The team of professors from Oxford was amazing and I am really excited about our molecular diagnostic channel and the opportunity to decentralize laboratory tests globally, ”he added.
Demand for COVID-19 diagnostics continues to grow as restrictions on social exclusion in certain countries, including England, begin to ease.
In response to growing demand, a number of pharmaceutical companies have signed cooperation agreements to strengthen their presence in the area, including Roche, which bought diagnostic specialist GenMark in March for approximately $ 1.8 billion.
As part of the proposed takeover of GenMark, Roche will add an arsenal of the company’s respiratory panels.
This diagnosis identifies the most common viral and bacterial organisms associated with upper respiratory tract infection, including SARS-CoV-2, which causes COVID-19.