(Sharecast News) - Avacta Group has entered into a collaboration with the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine (LSTM), it announced on Friday, to clinically validate the rapid saliva-based coronavirus antigen test it is developing with Cytiva.
The AIM-traded firm said that under the terms of the collaboration, LSTM would carry out the clinical validation of the Avacta Covid-19 antigen rapid saliva test in their category three laboratories, on patient samples.
In addition to working with the UK government's 'CONDOR' programme to provide Avacta with access to patient samples in the UK, the partnership with LSTM would also provide the opportunity to access patient samples in Africa and South America.
The higher prevalence of the disease in those regions meant that samples for prospective clinical validation studies were more readily available which, if necessary, could be used to speed up the validation process.
Avacta explained that clinical validation is the process of evaluating the performance of a diagnostic test using real patient samples.
Clinical validation would generate the sensitivity and specificity performance parameters, which are most often used to define the performance of a diagnostic test.
LSTM is currently evaluating the performance of prototype lateral flow tests provided by Cytiva alongside Avacta's 'ELISA' laboratory test using SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus samples, as a precursor to full clinical validation studies.
"I am delighted to have established this collaboration with the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine," said chief executive officer Dr Alastair Smith.
"It is an important partnership which provides Avacta with access to patient samples both in the UK and abroad, where the incidence of the disease is currently much higher, to ensure prompt access to a sufficient number of samples for clinical validation.
"We have been working with the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine for some time to define the target performance specifications of the saliva-based rapid test and their insight has been tremendously helpful in this regard."
At 0824 BST, shares in Avacta Group were up 4.4% at 139.9p.
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