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Roche develops new research test kits for Omicron variant -Breaking

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© Reuters. On October 7, 2020, a sign is visible at the diagnostics facility for Roche, the Swiss pharmaceutical giant. REUTERS/Peter Nicholls/File Photo

Brenna Hughes Neghaiwi

ZURICH, (Reuters) – Roche’s recently acquired subsidiary TIB Molbiol developed three new tests kits that can help researchers identify mutations in Omicron’s coronavirus variant. Roche stated this Friday.

As they attempt to determine how widespread it is, governments around the globe are urgently searching for COVID-19 cases in recent years.

The World Health Organization (WHO), which classified Omicron last week as a SARS CoV-2 “variant in concern”, said it could spread faster than other forms.

Thomas Schinecker (head of Roche Diagnostics) stated that they are now able offer a test which can identify the B.1.1.529 Omicron SARSCoV-2 variant. This will help us better understand how it spreads and behaves.

Although the WHO states that all variants can be detected by widely accessible tests, most PCR tests are unable to distinguish Omicron from Delta as the most prevalent and infectious form of the virus.

The TaqPath test, which is produced by Thermo Fisher in the United States (NYSE:) has been recommended as a proxy.

Roche claimed that new Roche-TIB Molbiol test kits are able to distinguish unique Omicron mutations from the other SARS/CoV-2 variants.

Researchers can use them to detect Omicron variants and analyze their spread. Roche indicated that the devices could be used to assess the impact of therapies, vaccines and other public health interventions on variant spread.

Roche bought Berlin-based TIB Molbiol, Dec. 1, in order to broaden its PCR test portfolio and combat infectious diseases.

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