A new partnership for the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority’s (BARDA) ongoing efforts to grapple with COVID-19 has united it with Chembio Diagnostics, Inc. in an attempt to create a point-of-care in vitro diagnostic test.
If successful, that test would be capable of detecting SARS-CoV-2 — the virus that causes COVID-19 — in respiratory specimens. Hosted on the company’s proprietary platform — the DPP Assay and DPP Micro Reader — it is an antigen detection test. That platform has already made the rounds for other viruses as well, having already gained U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) clearance on assays for Zika, Ebola, and HIV.
Now, the new COVID-19 test will utilize respiratory specimens plucked from nasal swabs and nasopharyngeal swabs. The partners intend for it to be rapid in their diagnostics and easy to use. If approved by the FDA, Chembio intends to scale production of these tests at its Hauppauge, New York facilities, and up the capacity for COVID-19 diagnostic tests in the United States as a result.