Sunday, May 31, 2020

Avacta & Medusa19 enter distribution agreement for rapid COVID-19 test

Avacta Group, the listed life sciences business based in Wetherby and Cambridge, has entered into an exclusive distribution agreement with Medusa19 for direct-to-consumer sales of a saliva-based rapid test for the COVID-19 antigen

Avacta recently announced a partnership with Cytiva (formerly GE Healthcare Life Sciences) to develop a saliva-based rapid antigen test to indicate whether a person has the COVID-19 infection which will be in the form of a simple test strip.

The test is intended to give a result within minutes and for use by both healthcare professionals and consumers.

The Group has agreed an exclusive distribution agreement with Medusa19 for the supply of the COVID-19 rapid test direct to consumers globally, subject to the necessary regulatory approvals.

Medusa19 has been established by Richard Hughes and Mahmud Kamani, both founder shareholders of Boohoo.com and shareholders of Avacta1, to build a global consumer self-testing business.

Medusa19’s initial focus will be on COVID-19 home testing and it is currently investing in global e-commerce, logistics and customer support infrastructure in preparation for Avacta’s COVID-19 test launch.

It will also have non-exclusive rights to supply the tests to businesses for workforce testing. The distribution agreement includes a profit-sharing arrangement.

The global demand for rapid antigen tests, which will be critical to lockdown exit strategies around the world in order to get healthy, non-contagious people back to work, could be many millions of tests per month. There will also be an ongoing need for several years for this type of testing as the disease recurs.

Avacta recently announced that it rapidly developed Affimer reagents that detect the SARS-COV-2 virus spike protein and it has now supplied those to Cytiva for test development. The Group is intending to establish further rapid test strip manufacturing partners in anticipation of a very high demand for the COVID-19 antigen test.

“I am delighted to have entered into this distribution agreement with Medusa19, which will provide a global route direct-to-consumer for Avacta’s rapid point-of-care COVID-19 antigen test. The potential size of this market, and the expected demand from businesses for workforce screening, is substantial,” said Dr Alastair Smith, CEO of Avacta Group.

“The significant investment that Medusa19 is making in conjunction with the track records of the Medusa19 team, gives me great confidence in the rapid growth of direct-to-consumer sales of the Avacta COVID-19 test across the United Kingdom, European Union and the United States subject to the necessary regulatory approvals. I expect the commercial impact of this partnership to be very significant to Avacta.

“I am looking forward to working with the Medusa19 team on commercialising the COVID-19 rapid test and other consumer diagnostic tests that Avacta develops in the future, in line with the Group’s Affimer diagnostics strategy.”

Richard Hughes and Mahmud Kamani, founders of Medusa19, said: “We immediately recognised the global opportunity to distribute the simple and unique saliva-based COVID-19 rapid test being developed by Avacta based on their unique and powerful Affimer platform.

“Medusa19 will enable end-to-end supply of these tests on a global basis subject to regulatory approval and manufacturing capacity which will be key. The enormous, world-wide demand for these tests requires a robust and scalable platform which we are in the process of creating. Hundreds of millions of tests are required and this demand will continue.

“The test being created by Avacta and its partners is intended to enable an individual with the COVID-19 infection, whether they have symptoms or not, to be identified before antibodies have been generated by the body.

“Given this test will be saliva based, it could be used in airports, offices, factories and in the home environment, providing a result within minutes and with no requirement for medical supervision. It is potentially ground-breaking and a major step forward in the fight against COVID-19.”

Help us maintain our standards of journalism

Readers enjoy our news site but keeping our news up to date and authoritative, without charging readers to view the site is a challenge. Especially now with the Corona Virus measures affecting us all, as many clients have been severely affected and are naturally reducing their spend on advertisements. Given this lack of revenue stream we are calling on the generosity of our readers to help us fill that void and enable our journalists to continue delivering the news that you enjoy.

Unlike many other news sites, we don't have annoying pop ups or charge scandalous prices for events. We also produce printed magazines for each title and we make these freely available to read on line too, for your enjoyment. Often, people have asked why we don't make a charge for viewers to read these magazines and news stories but we feel that would adversely affect our readership/advertisers response rate. But with advertising revenues now severely affected we need your help. So, if you can support our news sites/magazines with either a small donation of even £1, or a subscription to our magazine, which costs from just £31.50 per year, (inc p&P and mailed direct to your door) your generosity will help us weather the current storm and continue in our quest to deliver quality journalism.

We value your readership and your support, as this enables us to continue to provide our regular daily news updates. We've been established over 30 years, during which we've lost count of the numerous recessions and financial meltdowns, and we intend to weather the storms caused by Covid-19. So, every reader contribution, however big or small, is invaluable in helping us to get through this. Please click here to help support your favourite news site/magazine.




Latest news

Channel 4 puts Leeds at centre of digital strategy

Channel 4 has this week unveiled plans for its Leeds-based in-house digital content studio, 4Studio, putting the city at the epicentre of its digital...

Bank cash sees biofuel supplier support NHS

A Barnsley-based biofuel supplier has secured six-figure funding to provide fuel to an NHS hospital during the continuing pandemic. The funding from HSBC UK will...

Pandemic sees business confidence plummet in Yorkshire

Business confidence in Yorkshire fell 12 points during May to a near-record low of -31%, according to the latest ‘Business Barometer’ from Lloyds Bank...

Harris CM begins contract to extend specialist engineering campus

Harris CM has started work on a contract to extend York College’s specialist motor vehicle and engineering campus. The contact will see the Yorkshire construction...

Gelder reveal its new ‘Can Do’ Commercial Division Leadership Team

The Gelder Group merged its Facilities Maintenance and Building and Major Contracts Divisions in 2019 to one ‘Commercial Division’ reporting in to Construction Director...

Safe working guidelines published for British businesses

BSI, the UK’s National Standards Body, has published new safe working guidelines to help businesses manage a safe return to work and reoccupation of...

Related news

Channel 4 puts Leeds at centre of digital strategy

Channel 4 has this week unveiled plans for its Leeds-based in-house digital content studio, 4Studio, putting the city at the epicentre of its digital...

Bank cash sees biofuel supplier support NHS

A Barnsley-based biofuel supplier has secured six-figure funding to provide fuel to an NHS hospital during the continuing pandemic. The funding from HSBC UK will...

Pandemic sees business confidence plummet in Yorkshire

Business confidence in Yorkshire fell 12 points during May to a near-record low of -31%, according to the latest ‘Business Barometer’ from Lloyds Bank...

Harris CM begins contract to extend specialist engineering campus

Harris CM has started work on a contract to extend York College’s specialist motor vehicle and engineering campus. The contact will see the Yorkshire construction...

By continuing to use the site, you agree to the use of cookies. more information

The cookie settings on this website are set to "allow cookies" to give you the best browsing experience possible. If you continue to use this website without changing your cookie settings or you click "Accept" below then you are consenting to this.

Close