Biotech company with Grand Island office approved to use new coronavirus test

Grand Island

FILE – This undated electron microscope image made available by the U.S. National Institutes of Health in February 2020 shows the Novel Coronavirus SARS-CoV-2. Also known as 2019-nCoV, the virus causes COVID-19. The sample was isolated from a patient in the U.S. On Tuesday, April 21, 2020, U.S. health regulators OK’d the first coronavirus test that allows people to collect their own sample at home, a new approach that could help expand testing options in most states. The sample will still have to be shipped for processing back to LabCorp, which operates diagnostic labs throughout the U.S. (NIAID-RML via AP)

GRAND ISLAND, N.Y. (WIVB) — An Ithaca-based biotechnology company with an office in Grand Island has been approved to use a new coronavirus test.

On Thursday morning, Rheonix announced that it had been granted Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for the Rheonix COVID-19 MDx Assay.

Using respiratory samples, the fully-automated test enables the detection of the virus that causes COVID-19. Results become available the same day.

“Rapid diagnosis is critical in efforts to control the SARS-CoV-2 virus,” said Richard Montagna, Ph.D., FACB, senior vice president for scientific and clinical affairs at Rheonix. “We at Rheonix are grateful to the people on the front lines fighting the spread of the COVID-19 illness, and are proud to be able to support them with a rapid, accurate and automated tool to assist in their efforts.”

It’s not clear how this will affect the amount of coronavirus testing in western New York, but Rheonix says it has begun shipping the tests to high-need hospital laboratories.

Evan Anstey is a digital content producer who has been part of the News 4 team since 2015. See more of his work here.

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