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November 18, 2021

Coronavirus company news summary – Michigan faces Covid-19 test kit shortage – US researchers develop false-positive detection system

By Chris Lo

The US state of Michigan is facing a shortage of rapid Covid-19 tests as more businesses are testing their employees. The state is currently seeing an increase in the number of Covid-19 cases. As of 17 November, a total of 1,224,273 confirmed cases were reported in the state. The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services told News 10 that due to a shortage in supplies, the department is not presently supplying test kits to schools.

Researchers at the University of Missouri School of Medicine in the US have developed a method to detect possible false-positive Covid-19 results. This technique could be beneficial for asymptomatic people who are not exposed to the SARS-Cov-2 virus and aid in averting unnecessary quarantining and repeated testing. The reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) test, a current golden standard for Covid-19 testing, is linked to the reduced number of false positives. Deploying a limited retesting approach could identify clinically relevant testing errors and aids labs in enhancing testing practices.

Microbix Biosystems has extended its portfolio of Quality Assessment Products (QAPs) to incorporate controls that back polymerase chain reaction (PCR) tests for four SARS-CoV-2 variants of concern (VOC). The in-vitro diagnostic quality controls can improve the PCR lab tests’ workflow accuracy for the Brazilian, Delta, South African and UK variants. Created using COPAN FLOQSwabs, the four VOCs are in addition to QAPs for the SARS-Cov-2 Wuhan strain.

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