Coronavirus: “fast and accurate” antibody test developed by Edinburgh researchers

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A blood test company claiming that its Edinburgh researchers have developed a “quick and accurate” antibody test urged ministers from the United Kingdom and Scottish governments to start talks so that the NHS can benefit.

Quotient, a Swiss-based company, said its screening machines, which have received European regulatory approval, can produce 36,000 test results per day.

Each test can be performed in 35 minutes with 99.8% accuracy, the firm said.

The purpose of the test is to identify if anyone has had Covid-19 by looking for antibodies the body has built up to fight the disease.

The company said it has 12 machines and hopes to have 20 more available by the end of the year, and has previously spoken with stakeholders in Europe.

Franz Walt, general manager of Quotient, who was general manager of the laboratory that developed the first test for Sars in 2003, said: “We are really proud to have developed such a fast and accurate test. “

“We have strong roots in the UK and we want to speak to the ministers there so that MosaiQ can be used in the incredible national effort to fight coronaviruses and revive the economy,” he added.

The British government has said it is capable of testing for immunity to coronaviruses, but its capacity is currently unknown.

The government is also trying to develop home test kits. However, their reliability raises concerns.

Ed Farrell, director of operations for the Edinburgh Quotient office, said: “We are extremely proud of all our work here in Scotland and Switzerland.

“We have such a rich history here and we hope we can now make a difference in this difficult time. “

Additional reports by the PA

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