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March 11, 2021

Thermo Fisher Scientific unveils panel to identify Covid-19 mutations

Thermo Fisher Scientific has introduced its customisable Applied Biosystems TaqMan SARS-CoV-2 Mutation Panel, which has been designed to provide surveillance of ongoing virus mutations that cause Covid-19.

Thermo Fisher Scientific has introduced its customisable Applied Biosystems TaqMan SARS-CoV-2 Mutation Panel, which has been designed to provide surveillance of ongoing virus mutations that cause Covid-19.

The new panel is a menu of 22 verified real-time PCR assays for detecting SARS-CoV-2 mutations.

The assays help in the surveillance of variants that are causing Covid-19 infections in specific regions worldwide and enable laboratories to choose, which mutations to track.

As SARS-CoV-2 has mutated several times, with some variants possibly affecting the efficacy of treatments and vaccines, it is essential to continuously surveil the viral changes.

Designed to be highly scalable, the TaqMan SARS-CoV-2 Mutation Panel can run a few or hundreds of samples to detect one or many mutations. It offers laboratories the capability to meet different levels of testing needs with already used real-time PCR instruments.

Based on TaqMan SNP genotyping assay technology, which can help to identify and distinguish mutations efficiently, the panel delivers results in an hour.

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Thermo Fisher Scientific genetic sciences business president Mark Smedley said: “With an evolving virus, having up to date, reliable, and accurate information is critical in fighting back.

“With this panel, we’re empowering researchers and clinicians by putting another tool in their hands to monitor changes in the virus so they can make informed and effective decisions for overall public health.”

Last month, Thermo Fisher Scientific received emergency use authorisation (EUA) from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for its multiplex real-time PCR test, Applied Biosystems TaqPath COVID-19, Flu A, Flu B Combo Kit.

In a separate development, EmitBio has reported new evidence, which shows that its proprietary light technology can inactivate SARS-CoV-2 variants, including the UK and South Africa variants that are highly infectious.

The company’s novel, handheld treatment device directs energy into the upper respiratory tract with 100% of the dose available in the area of requirement, eliminating the potential side effects of systemic treatments.

EmitBio executive chairman Neal Hunter said: “We have clearly demonstrated that EmitBio treatment technology is mutation-resistant and resilient. This is an important weapon in the global fight against an enemy that keeps evolving.”

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