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Healthcare company Novacyt launches new coronavirus test

The company says its Primerdesign coronavirus test could detect the 2019 strain of the virus

Healthcare company Novacyt has launched a new molecular test for the Chinese coronavirus that is now spreading worldwide.

The company said its Primerdesign coronavirus test could detect the 2019 strain of the virus. It believes this would make it stand out from other current tests which it said were less specific.

“Over the last few days, we have seen significant early demand for our ‘genesig® 2019-nCoV’ test from over 10 countries,” CEO Graham Mullis said in a statement.

“We believe our assay is the first European test to be made available and will be introduced this weekend at the Medlab Expo in the Middle East.”

Coronavirus is believed to have started in a food market illegally selling wildlife in Wuhan, China. About 60 million people in Hubei province are living under virtual lockdown.

The number of confirmed coronavirus cases has risen to 9,882 in mainland China.

The new cases in China bring the global total to more than 10,000 cases with at least 213 fatalities.

The UK confirmed its first two cases of the coronavirus today, with the government advising that anyone coming back from China with respiratory symptoms should self isolate for 14 days while anyone coming back from the Wuhan area should do the same whether they have symptoms or not.

FURTHER READING: What is the coronavirus and how could it affect stock markets?

FURTHER READING: Coronavirus: BA suspends China flights as evacuation race begins

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