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UK company develops prototype of cheap, 10-minute test that shows if you already had coronavirus

UK company develops prototype of cheap, 10-minute test that shows if you already had coronavirus
© UPI Photo

A British company has developed a prototype of a cheap, 10-minute coronavirus antibody test, sending it to laboratories for validation. 

Health technology firm Mologic created the $1 preliminary antibody test, which would determine if people have previously been infected with the coronavirus that’s rocking the world. 

The company, which also developed one of the first at-home pregnancy tests, hopes to make these available as early as June, Reuters reported.

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These tests are different from antigen tests, which show if a person currently has COVID-19. The company has also produced prototypes of diagnostic tests, which it said are being tested at the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine and St Georges’ University London. 

All prototypes will be tested by global partners, including in Senegal, the U.S., China, Malaysia, Spain and Brazil.

“While the assessment and optimisation will be expedited, it is vital that any prototype device for COVID-19 is subject to rigorous validation before it is made available for use in the global pandemic response,” Mologic said in a press release.

The U.K. has purchased 3.5 million antibody testing kits from different companies and is testing them to ensure they work before sending them out, Reuters reported.

One health official told lawmakers Wednesday that these kits would be available to send out within days after a prototype was validated in Oxford. But other officials are more cautious and don’t want to sacrifice the test’s accuracy in order to make it available sooner. 

Mologic has not received orders from the U.K. government and said other tests may be ready before this one, Reuters reported.