Workplace PCR: Workplace-based PCR testing for SARS-CoV-2 & variants
Abacus Diagnostica Oy
Abacus Diagnostica is a molecular diagnostics company specialized in automated testing of infectious diseases utilizing the patented GenomEra® -technology. The proprietary technologies utilized in the products include exceptionally stable PCR dry-reagent chemistry, contamination-safe low-waste reaction vessels, and highly sensitive time-resolved fluorometric (TRF) labels. The GenomEra CDX has already proven as one of the fastest and easiest-to-use PCR systems.
In the current project, Abacus concentrates on solving employer-identified bottlenecks for COVID-19 testing of mobile and seasonal workforce, especially in industries where long work and leisure periods alternate, or which are dependent on foreign labour. This is achieved by modifying Abacus’ 1st generation CE-IVD marked SARS-CoV-2 test for increased simplicity, biosafety, assay sensitivity and speed. Special focus is given to variants of concern (VoCs) while ensuring the detection of all SARS-CoV-2 strains.
Key features of the new test: High sensitivity (500 copies/mL) for screening of asymptomatic employees; new non-invasive specimen types accepted (gargle/saliva/swab); immediate inactivation of samples for biosafe handling; TAT < 60 min comprising 2-min hands-on; no requirements for clean room, biosafety cabinet, or cold storage; 1-h training of operator. Key impacts of the Inno4Cov funding: Accelerated launch of PCR-based COVID-19 detection on-site at workplaces; discrimination of VoCs; allowing employers to adjust preventive measures in an informed and targeted way; preventing further infection chains at workplaces; preventing financial losses caused by business standstills; preparing for future epidemics and pandemics by continuous expanding of the test menu.