Nonacus wins Government grant to validate rapid surveillance testing for COVID-19 (and other viral respiratory diseases).

In order to support the governments back-to-work strategy and avoid a second spike of cases, accurate, real-time monitoring of the coronavirus and its spread is critical. This requires advanced testing methods which can be rapidly deployed across many laboratories, globally, to allow for the surveillance and monitoring of the virus within and between populations by public health institutions.

Nonacus have been developing a novel and highly rapid Whole Genome Sequencing (WGS) library preparation approach for sequencing viral genomes with nanopore sequencing. Whole genome sequencing increases our understanding of the changes in the viral genome that will allow public health institutions to monitor the development and spread of the epidemic, guide control measures and inform vaccine research. This method will provide a more rapid, lower cost and higher throughput advancement to existing nanopore methods currently being used for the WGS of SARS-CoV-2.

“We are delighted to receive this grant from Innovate UK,” says Chris Sale, CEO and co-founder of Nonacus. “It will enable us to undertake the final validation and optimisation work for the rapid SARS-CoV-2 WGS library prep product here at Nonacus before validating the protocol in two clinical laboratories already undertaking SARS-CoV-2 work. It will also allow us to extend the technology to include SARS-CoV-2 as part of a comprehensive respiratory viral surveillance product so, if your cough is not due to COVID-19, we will be able to tell you what is causing it. This will help not only improve surveillance for SARS-CoV-2 but for other viral respiratory diseases too”.

Nonacus expect the product to become commercially available later this year.

For more information please contact Nonacus at info@nonacus.com.