Bosch has developed a rapid test for its Vivalytic analysis device to detect the SARS-Cov-2 pathogen.
The test provides a reliable result in 39 minutes and is currently the fastest polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test in the world. The test is intended for decentralized use in mobile test centers at motorway service stations or airports.
The people for whom the test is performed can get a reliable result while at the test site. The test is now available in Europe, approved by the European Commission, and helps prevent quarantined time, facilitates laboratory work and contributes to travel and work safety.
“One of the main elements for combating the coronavirus pandemic is the rapid identification of sources of infection. That’s why, after our first coronavirus test, we focused on developing one even faster, ”says Dr. Volkmar Denner, Chairman of the Board of Robert Bosch GmbH.
The test has a sensitivity of 98% and a specificity of 100%.
To develop it, Bosch Healthcare Solutions partnered with German biotechnology company R-Biopharm, a leading provider of manual PCR tests.
A health premiere: simultaneous testing of five samples
Bosch launched the test for its Vivalytic analysis device at the end of March, after only six weeks of development. As a multiplex test, it simultaneously checks the samples for SARS-CoV-2 virus and nine other respiratory diseases in two and a half hours.
“With our various coronavirus tests and variable analysis strategies, we open up a range of test scenarios with a Vivalytic device, from screening to assisting differential diagnosis for diseases with similar symptoms,” says Marc Meier, President of Bosch Healthcare Solutions GmbH.
And the development work is still in full swing at Bosch: from the beginning of October 2020, it will be possible to evaluate five samples simultaneously in a single test cartridge and at a comparable speed.
The test capacity will thus be increased, allowing the fully automated processing of over 160 samples per day using a Vivalytic device. In addition, the optimized software will reduce the time to obtain the SARS-CoV-2 test result for positive samples.
The test is used quickly: a sample is taken from the patient’s nose or throat using a sterile swab and inserted into the test cartridge. Then, the test cartridge, which already contains all the reagents needed for testing, is inserted into the Vivalytic device for automated analysis.
By the end of the year, Bosch intends to reach a capacity of one million tests. As demand for the analyzer and rapid tests remains high, the company is working closely with its suppliers to maximize capacity and further increase supply.