In a bid to expedite COVID-19 testing many companies around the globe are working towards finding accurate, reliable, cost-effective and safe testing solutions.
Recently, San Francisco- based Mammoth Biosciences signed a deal with drugmaker GSK’s consumer healthcare division to develop a handheld, disposable test based on Mammoth’s novel CRISPR- based DETECTR platform.
For the record, Mammoth’s platform is capable of detecting and signaling the presence of viral RNA strands received from a simple nasal swab which is similar to the present coronavirus testing procedure. The solution is also capable of facilitating early detection of viral RNA even if the person is asymptomatic.
Incorporated in the year 2017, Mammoth Biosciences was established primarily to develop CRISPR- based disease detecting solutions. Since inception, the company has raised approximately USD 68.1 million.
Reportedly, CRISPR is used as a gene editing device. However, Mammoth is using it more as a search engine. The DETECTR platform may be used to inspect coronavirus in a molecule and then show in the test result similar to how a pregnancy test provides visual results in minutes.
Notably, GSK Consumer Healthcare develops and market medicines in the areas of pain relief, digestive health, oral health, skin health, nutrition and respiratory disorders, showcasing a portfolio which comprises of prominent brands like Sensodyne, Abreva, Tums and Excedrin.
According to Trevor Martin, Co-Founder and CEO, Mammoth, the new coronavirus testing kit is simple, disposable and showcases results in less than 20 minutes and does not require a lab-based administration. This implies that the test can be conducted at any place.
Citing reliable sources, both the pharmaceutical companies are currently working on the coronavirus test and aims at submitting the testing kit for FDA Emergency Use Authorization before 2020 ends.
Once approved, the advanced testing kit will be made available to the U.S. healthcare centers that treat COVID-19 patients and will eventually be available to the consumers.