CRUMLIN-BASED BBI Solutions has announced plans to rapidly develop and rollout millions of coronavirus tests.
As part of the government’s National Testing Plan, the expertise and resources of the UK’s world-leading life sciences industries are being pooled to build a large British diagnostics industry as quickly as possible.
The “UK Rapid Test Consortium, UK-RTC” comprises Oxford University, BBI Solutions, Abingdon Health, CIGA Healthcare, and has been launched to design and develop a new antibody test to determine whether people have developed immunity after contracting the virus.
All existing antibody tests that have gone through the validation process have not proven accurate enough, therefore the government is backing efforts to develop a home-grown test.
New national collaborations such as the UK-RTC will contribute to the Government’s wider target to carry out 100,000 tests a day by the end of April, focusing on frontline healthcare and other essential workers first before deploying the tests to the wider population.
The consortium will draw on BBI Solutions’ rapid test development and expertise, as well as its wider manufacturing capabilities, primarily at its headquarters at Crumlin, South Wales, and its site in Edinburgh.
The company will also draw on resource and expertise in other parts of the global BBI Group, in the United States, China and South Africa.
BBI Group CEO Dr Mario Gualano said: “BBI Solutions is honoured and privileged to be invited to be part of this consortium, and its critical work.
“Utilising the resources and expertise across BBI Solutions’ global business, we are moving quickly and effectively to seek solutions that will enable the UK to rollout a significantly scaled-up coronavirus testing programme.”