Yahoo News: UNITED announced a partnership with Singapore’s Acumen Research Laboratories to distribute its proprietary Acu-CoronaTM 2.0 test kit and to supply the test to international governments and healthcare organizations. The announcement was made by Bachir Diagne and Ali Diallo, General Partners at UNITED, and Dr. Siew Hwa ONG, founder and Chief Scientist at Acumen Research Laboratories. Read the full announcement on Yahoo News.
Acu-Corona™ 2.0 is an open platform, in vitro qualitative diagnostic assay based on real-time reverse transcription and polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and that detects SARS-Cov-2 RNA in RNA samples extracted from patient specimens. The testing method received a Provisional Authorization from Singapore’s Health Sciences Authority and Acumen Research Laboratories intends to seek FDA certification in collaboration with UNITED.
“The COVID-19 pandemic needs to be countered by effective testing to help in the medical efforts of diagnosis and treatment as well in implementing containment measures of contact tracing in the community and quarantine, where needed,” said Dr. ONG. “We are very pleased to partner with Acumen Research Laboratories on the deployment of an immediate solution to address the pandemic crisis,” said Diagne. “As an official reseller and authorized dealer of Acu-Corona™ 2.0., UNITED is already in touch with multiple American organizations, agencies and international governments to provide them with effective and accurate diagnostic test kits.
“Dr. Ong and her team have developed a very powerful testing method that needs to be shared at the global level,” said Diallo. “The FDA certification process is the next natural step for further validation of the Acu-Corona™ 2.0 diagnostic test kit and UNITED will fully support this process.”
The Acu-Corona™ 2.0 consists of two kits, one containing an RT-PCR enzyme and nuclease-free water; and another one containing some array plates with printed and dried RT-PCR primers, dual-labeled hydrolysis probes, and plate seals. The design is targeted at achieving high-throughput testing, reduced manual steps and cold-chain logistics, and overall robust results.
Acumen Research Laboratories’ Acu-Corona™ 2.0. is part of UNITED’s collaborative response initiative to address the COVID-19 pandemic crisis with immediate innovation-based solutions.
“UNITED is at the forefront of the coronavirus fight with a series of high-impact interventions in the healthcare sector,” commented Diallo. “We are working on multiple fronts such as the distribution of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) with Team Connect, our Jordan-based humanitarian relief arm; hydroxychloroquine clinical research in partnership with the government of Senegal; and a health impact fund with global mission-driven investors. We are also collaborating with a leading European technology provider with the goal of leveraging our expertise in the telecom and big data spaces to build a tracking platform.”
More recently, UNITED has also been actively engaged in the fight against price gouging as reported by Bloomberg.