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Thermo Fisher (TMO) Boosts COVID Testing With Wastewater Kit

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Thermo Fisher Scientific (TMO - Free Report) recently made a new development in the field of COVID-19 testing. This time, the company launched a wastewater isolation kit for SARS-CoV-2 surveillance called MagMAX Wastewater Ultra Nucleic Acid Isolation Kit. This kit is expected to help restrain regional and community spreading of the COVID-19 virus. 

As per Thermo Fisher, wastewater surveillance is an effective method to monitor the regional spread of infectious diseases before an outbreak takes place. Accordingly, amid the ongoing pandemic emergency, public health laboratories and researchers have been focused on developing surveillance methods using wastewater to control the spread of the SARS-CoV-2 virus.

The company noted that this method will identify asymptomatic carriers on college campuses to monitor regional spread among communities. This tool is also useful in capturing emerging mutations ahead of potential future outbreaks.

More on the MagMAX Kit

This particular testing kit does not require nasal swabs or saliva samples. Further, it can assess infection rates among a general population up to two weeks earlier than individual or pooled testing.

This MagMAX Wastewater Ultra Nucleic Acid Isolation Kit is a flexible and easy-to-implement solution for laboratories that are setting up new surveillance programs or incorporating SARS-CoV-2 testing into existing ones.

Combining with Thermo Fisher's comprehensive portfolio of products like KingFisher purification systems and QuantStudio qPCR platforms, the kit can provide an end-to-end solution to detect SARS-CoV-2 from wastewater.

Industry Prospects

According to a Research and Markets report of March 2021, the global market for Environmental Testing is expected to reach $12.5 billion by 2027, at a CAGR of 7% from 2020 through 2027.

Considering the need for reopening of schools, colleges and offices amid the active spread of coronavirus and its more contagious formations, the importance of wastewater surveillance is growing day by day. In such a situation, the latest development by Thermo Fisher is undoubtedly strategic and well timed.

Recent COVID-19 Testing Developments

Medical technology company Hologic (HOLX - Free Report) , in September, launched the Novodiag system for on-demand molecular testing in Europe. The Novodiag system’s CE-IVD test menu consists of highly multiplexed on-demand assays that can identify gastrointestinal infections and antibiotic resistance, as well as a targeted assay for SARS-CoV-2 detection. The company also has a robust pipeline.

In the same month, the global provider of Sample to Insight solutions, QIAGEN (QGEN - Free Report) won a U.S. government contract to increase the production capacity of consumables used on its NeuMoDx 96 and 288 integrated PCR testing systems, an important step to support laboratory testing as the COVID-19 pandemic continues.

Scientific instruments and high-value analytical and diagnostic solutions company Bruker (BRKR - Free Report) recently launched the FluoroTypeSARS-CoV-2 varID Q assay — a quantitative LiquidArraymid-plexPCR panel. This very sensitive FluoroTypeSARS-CoV-2 varID Q diagnostic test detects the SARS-CoV-2 virus using three independent gene targets for high assay robustness, even in case of future additional mutations. The assay achieved a sensitivity of 98% and a specificity of 100% during its clinical performance evaluation study.

Further, the company’s clinical research collaboration on COVID-19 pheno-conversion and subsequent pheno-reversion has discovered transient and persistent systemic changes in molecular signatures in patient blood samples three months after the acute COVID-19 disease phase. These biochemical abnormalities, identified by a quantitative, label-free assay platform integrating nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy and mass spectrometry (MS), are related to ongoing "long COVID" symptoms, which persist post-acute infection and can affect more than half of the recovered COVID patients even six months after infection.

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