The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) said it will contribute $699,000 to Hologic as the company develops a genetic test with the potential to process up to 1,000 coronavirus samples in 24 hours.
Hologic is designing its molecular diagnostic coronavirus test for use with the company's Panther Fusion molecular testing instrument, which delivers automated test results with minimal user interaction. If successful, the new coronavirus test could provide clinicians with test results in less than three hours.
"Rapid, high-throughput tests are critical to provide quick results for more Americans and to aid the nationwide public health response [to the coronavirus]," said Rick Bright, PhD, director of the HHS Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA) office.
BARDA and Hologic anticipate the development of the diagnostic test to be completed in several weeks, after which they plan to submit the test to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for emergency use authorization (EUA).
BARDA is currently accepting proposals for the advanced development of diagnostics, vaccines, therapeutics, and other medical products to help manage the ongoing coronavirus outbreak. The office is also hosting a web portal for innovators and product developers to submit descriptions of products or technologies they are developing to treat the coronavirus disease (COVID-19).