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August 20, 2021

Coronavirus company news summary – Spartan Medical launches Covid support programme for universities – Simple saliva test as reliable as nasopharyngeal swab at detecting Covid-19, study finds

By Chris Lo

Spartan Medical has launched the COVID-19 Surge Augmentation Support (SAS) Program, a testing service for colleges and universities. The programme involves pop-up tests, licensed medical staff, contact tracers and technology to connect the Antigen Rapid test with confirmatory polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test results for the same person. In addition, the service will integrate daily reports to local and state health departments.

A real-world clinical trial by Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC) researchers has found that results from Covid-19 tests using self-collected saliva are as reliable as nasopharyngeal swabs, which are the current gold standard for diagnostic testing of the disease. In an outpatient setting, saliva tests could identify 93% of Covid-19 cases. Researchers expect this data to aid in mitigating Covid-19 testing challenges due to shortages of the specialised nasopharyngeal swabs and the burden on the trained medical personnel required to conduct the tests.

Agilent Technologies has announced that researchers at the Indian Institute of Technology Bombay in India and the QIMR Berghofer Medical Research Institute in Australia have leveraged its Agilent Cary 630 FTIR Spectrometer to create a rapid screening approach that distinguishes between Covid-19-positive patients who are likely to develop severe symptoms and those who may develop only mild symptoms. The new method’s classification algorithm uses infrared spectra of blood plasma, acquired on Agilent’s Spectrometer.

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