Lexogen GmbH, a Vienna-based market leader in Next-Generation Sequencing (NGS) and transcriptomics announced today the launch of a pioneering ultra-high-throughput SARS-CoV-2 test that will allow for the first time a true mass screening of the whole population. This test allows to identify newly infected individuals even in absence of symptoms, to put them in quarantine, treat them very early, and avoid the contamination of their contacts. It also allows to track the infectious level of infected people and could get them back to society and work as soon as they are not dangerous for others.
A regular testing of the population permits to control the disease without locking down the population and shutting down the economy. By focusing first on risk groups and front-line workers, the test can help to keep open and safe essential facilities such as hospitals, schools, and retirement homes. However, Lexogen’s unique solution can be implemented in any work environment and allows regular testing of millions of people in 24 hours. Last but not least, the samples can be self-collected by everyone through gargles which makes it easy, absolutely non-invasive and painless compared to other solutions such as nasopharyngeal swabs.
“By testing all our employees every three days thanks to a campus initiative, we have now a clear demonstration that we can control the spread of the pandemic without shutting down the company and get infected people back to work earlier too. If we could do that on a country-wide scale, this would reduce drastically the economic and social impact of the pandemic. The limitation to date was the number of tests that laboratories could treat in parallel. However, our mass testing assay allows to do it and, consequently, may allow to save few points of the country GDP while keeping the population safe,” said Stéphane Barges, Chief Executive Officer at Lexogen.
This unique mass screening assay is based on the industry-leading and widely employed sequencing technology. It is currently the fastest method available on the market which also significantly reduces the amounts of consumables needed, making it an economically viable solution for a Public Health strategic implementation.
The development of this test was partially founded by the Austrian government and supported by the Austria Research Promotion Agency (FFG), as part of its “Emergency Call to research COVID-19 in the wake of the outbreak of SARS-CoV-2“.
Source – Lexogen