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3rd August 2020  Product update: rapidmicrobiology staff writer

RT-LAMP With Nanosequencing - LamPORE COVID-19 Testing to be Rolled Out by UK Government

Oxford Nanopore Technologies has announced an agreement with the UK’s Department of Health and Social Care, to roll out its novel LamPORE test. An initial 450k LamPORE SARS-CoV-2 tests will be made available for use by a number of NHS testing laboratories. As well as providing a large number of tests for existing labs, the programme will help the UK to understand the different use cases for the technology, for example, the potential asymptomatic screening of frontline staff.  

LamPORE is designed to be used on either Oxford Nanopore’s desktop device (GridION) or palm-sized device (MinION Mk1C), providing the capacity of processing up to 15,000 samples a day or 2,000 samples a day respectively.  It is well suited to use in a central laboratory for high-throughput sample processing, or a near-community ‘pop-up lab’.  LamPORE results can be generated in under two hours.  The approach of having testing centres available in more locations combined with this speed supports rapid turnaround of results.

LamPORE is a precise, rapid, low-cost and highly scalable assay for the detection of SARS-CoV-2, designed to test saliva and swab RNA samples from either symptomatic or asymptomatic people. Using RT-LAMP to amplify specific viruses and nanopore sequencing to identify the amplified viruses, this approach can differentiate between actual SARS-CoV2 present and errors that can occur during PCR amplification, which can be a source of ‘false positive’ results.  An internal control allows the user to identify invalid results and as LamPORE does not rely on the same components used in existing RT-PCR tests, it offers the potential to ease pressure on current supply chains and expand testing access.

LamPORE is the first assay developed by Oxford Nanopore for diagnostic use. Oxford Nanopore is currently in the process of CE marking the device for diagnostic use. The company will also be pursuing regulatory clearance in other jurisdictions.

This Youtube video shows how nanopore DNA/RNA sequencing works

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Date Published: 3rd August 2020

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Note: This content has been edited by a rapidmicrobiology staff writer for style and content.

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