Bosch Develops World’s Fastest PCR Test for SARS-CoV-2
Bosch has developed a new rapid test for its Vivalytic analysis device to detect the SARS-CoV-2 pathogen. The test provides a reliable result in 39 minutes and is currently the fastest polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test worldwide. Bosch’s new rapid test is predestined for decentralized use in mobile test centers at freeway service stations or in airports. People who take the test can obtain a reliable result while at the testing site. The test has a sensitivity of 98 percent and a specificity of 100 percent. To develop it, the Bosch subsidiary Bosch Healthcare Solutions joined forces with the German biotechnology company R-Biopharm – a leading provider of highly sensitive manual PCR tests. PCR tests are considered the gold standard of test methods.
The advantages of Bosch’s rapid test lie not only in speedy analysis, but also in ease of use. A sample is taken from the patient’s nose or throat using a swab, and placed in the test cartridge. Then the test cartridge, which already contains all the reagents required for the test, is inserted into the Vivalytic device for automated analysis. The Vivalytic analysis device is designed to be user-friendly; medical staff requires only brief training on how to operate it.
By the end of the year, Bosch wants to reach capacity for one million tests. As demand for the analysis device and the rapid tests remains high, the company is working closely with its suppliers to maximize capacity and further increase supply. Simultaneous testing of five people with one test cartridge will also be possible as of early October.
Available now in Europe, the CE-approved test helps avoid time in quarantine, relieve laboratories, and make travel and work safer again. “One of the keys to fighting the coronavirus pandemic is to rapidly identify sources of infection. That’s why Bosch focused on following up on our first coronavirus test with an even faster one,” says Dr. Volkmar Denner, chairman of the board of management of Robert Bosch GmbH.