Pictor has announced a strategic collaboration with SCIENION to commercialise a Covid19 test system

Pictor has made significant recent progress in its strategic plan to develop and commercialise a low-cost, high-performance, high-throughput multiplexed COVID-19 IgG antibody test. 

The PictArrayTM SARS-CoV2 assay is unique in its ability to, in one test, detect the Spike Protein (SP) and Nucleocapsid Protein (NP) antibodies, thus differentiating those who have antibodies from a previous infection (SP and NP antibodies) from those who have been vaccinated (SP antibodies only).

With the global response to the pandemic increasingly focussed on primary management through vaccination – and revaccination where required, it will become increasingly important for authorities to be able to make this differentiation. Doing so would provide important insights into the epidemiological spread of the virus, and help inform more focussed control and prevention measures.

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For instance, business travellers who have been double vaccinated could be tested for their antibodies before departure and if the level is adequate and if antigen negative on their return, would not need to go into managed isolation because they would be deemed “low risk”. The Pictor test could also be used for border control workers to monitor their antibody status and identify when they need to be revaccinated.

Pictor is currently recruiting volunteers for a clinical trial in New Zealand to show its unique antibody test’s capabilities. It has also contracted two US-based laboratories to conduct trials in the United States as part of its push to obtain FDA Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) and bring to market in early 2022. The company also plan to pursue a positive Committee for Medicinal Products for Human Use (CHMP) opinion for use in the United Kingdom and European Union.

The trials follow Pictor’s highly successfully, recently completed, Alpha trial using blood samples from both COVID positive and negative samples which Pictor describes as “very exciting” in terms of the “outstandingly good results for both sensitivity and specificity for both SP and NP”.

Another potential benefit of the company’s rapid antibody test is the ability to highlight when a vaccinated person’s antibody levels are falling to a point when a booster vaccination may be advisable.  The assay results could also be anonymised to provide important data across specific communities and regions, which could prove invaluable in the ongoing COVID-19 response.

In another key development, Pictor has recently announced a technology-based collaboration with Scienion (a Bico company) which will see the two companies commercialise the high throughput PictArrayTM SARS-CoV-2 antibody testing system.

The combined Scienion-Pictor system will provide a highly automated miniaturised multiplex immunoassay test in a ninety-six well plate format capable of providing quick analysis on patients’ level of antibodies. 

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