Experts who created the technology behind Covid tests at the height of the pandemic have joined forces with a US biotech firm to develop tests for other conditions such as diabetes and Lyme disease.
Formed by a group of research scientists at the University of Aberdeen, Vertebrate Antibodies Ltd (VAL) has secured investment with Innova Medical Group (IMG) to form a new holding company, EpitogenX.
EpitogenX aims to develop lab-based diagnostic tests for Lyme disease and diabetes, which are notoriously difficult to diagnose early enough to enable timely intervention.
The new tests will be cheaper and more accurate than those currently available.
VAL used its technologies to develop Covid tests as part of the Scottish Government chief scientist office’s rapid response to Covid-19 programme.
This will now be used to do the same for other diseases.
Further technology developed during the pandemic called EpitoGen combines and displays molecular elements as they would appear naturally in the pathogen or virus.
This approach enhances the test’s performance, improves sensitivity and can incorporate new strains and variants into the tests.
Dr Abdo Alnabulsi, co-founder of VAL, said: “From the start, we set out to revolutionise the research and clinical sectors with innovative technologies.
“We’re thrilled to have found a partner in IMG who shares our vision and values and is equally committed to developing transformative products.
“I’m confident that this partnership will accomplish great things, and that our technology and products will make a global impact.”