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Research test kit for Covid-19 based on Avacta’s Affimer technology is released by Adeptrix

A research test kit that uses Avacta’s Affimer reagents to help detect the Covid-19 virus has been launched.

It is now available to scientists globally following the release by the Whittlesford company’s partner Adeptrix, which is based in Massachusetts, USA.

Avacta Group CEO Alastair Smith
Avacta Group CEO Alastair Smith

Avacta said is continuing to work with the UK government’s CONDOR programme to obtain regulatory approval in the UK to use the test for diagnostic purposes too.

The bead-assisted mass spectrometry (‘BAMS’) assay uses Affirmer reagents specific to the SARS-CoV-2 virus to capture its spike protein from a sample for rapid detection by mass spectrometry.

Up to 1,000 samples a day could be analysed by a single technician using BAMS.

Mass spectrometer manufacturer Bruker, which has a significant installed base of machines at hospitals around the world, has published an application note assessing the assay’s performance.

Avacta Group CEO Alastair Smith said: “I am delighted that the Affimer-based BAMS assay developed with Adeptrix is now available for scientists to use in their research into the coronavirus. “A research use assay is the first step in commercialising this powerful Affimer-based coronavirus research and diagnostic tool and the clinical evaluation of the assay in the UK to support CE marking for diagnostic use is a very high priority for Avacta.

“I am also very pleased indeed that Bruker has published their application note, providing considerable detail about the performance of the SARS-CoV-2 BAMS assay, clearly demonstrating the potential of this Affimer-based coronavirus mass spectrometry test and another important validation of the Affimer platform.”

Avacta will receive a royalty on the SARS-CoV-2 BAMS research kit sales.

Meanwhile, the company is working on a Covid-19 saliva test strip with Cytiva.

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