Genomics startup Helix receives $33 million in NIH funding to scale COVID-19 testing

Genomics startup Helix receives $33 million in NIH funding to scale COVID-19 testing

The U.S. National Institutes of Health (NIH) is revealing the primary beneficiaries of its Rapid Acceleration of Diagnostics (RADx) program, and San Mateo-based Helix is on the receiving finish of $33 million in federal funding because of this. Helix is a well being tech startup based in 2015 that focuses on insights derived from private genomics, however the firm has additionally developed a COVID-19 check that detects the presence of SARS-CoV-2 utilizing RT-PCR strategies.

The funding shall be used to assist Helix’s efforts to scale its COVID-19 testing efforts, with the purpose of reaching a price of 100,000 assessments per day by this fall, after which extending the throughput capability even additional after that. Helix’s check acquired FDA Emergency Use Approval (EUA) earlier this month, and has since been obtainable nationally throughout the U.S., promising “subsequent day” outcomes.

Helix has additionally filed for an EUA for a second sort of check, an NGS check that provides increased throughput for extra testing quantity, in addition to elevated sensitivity towards truly detecting the presence of the virus to keep away from false negatives. This check, if accepted, shall be key to serving to Helix obtain that a lot larger scale of testing functionality that’s the final purpose of the RADx program.

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That second check system presently looking for approval would be capable of course of as many as 25,000 assessments per day, and it makes use of a unique methodology that might additionally assist scale back the pressure on the availability chain.


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