Roche and TIB Molbiol, a subsidiary within the Roche Diagnostics division, announced available testing solutions that can identify the SARS-CoV-2 B.1.1.529 variant and differentiate between the Omicron subvariants BA.1, BA.1.1, BA.2, BA.2.2, BA.3 and Delta.
Thomas Schinecker, CEO Roche Diagnostics said:
Roche is pleased to offer testing options addressing the ongoing COVID-19 healthcare crisis, specifically in response to the WHO’s recent recommendation that the Omicron BA.2 subvariant should continue to be monitored by public health authorities. In addition to detecting the SARS-CoV-2, irrespective of the variants, we are able to provide testing solutions identifying and differentiating between BA.1, BA.1.1, BA.2, BA.2.2,BA.3 and Delta. It’s critical to quickly and accurately identify variants to inform ongoing research – including the ongoing development of therapeutics and vaccines. This can potentially stop or slow down the advancement of the disease.
The available research use only tests – VirSNiP SARS-CoV-2 Spike S371L S373P and VirSNiP SARS-CoV-2 Spike S371L S373P 452R – add to the test kits previously developed by Roche and TIB Molbiol for the detection of the recent BA.1 and BA.2, as well as other mutations, present in the novel B.1.1.529 Omicron SARS-CoV-2 variant.
Use of these tests assess the spread of circulating variants and can help monitor the potential impact of therapeutics, vaccines and public health interventions
TIB Molbiol’s researchers work in collaboration with academic contacts to continually screen for new variants and emerging diseases. TIB Molbiol and Roche provided the first research use only SARS-CoV-2 detection test in January 2020 – only days after the new coronavirus was first sequenced.
As previously reported, the World Health Organization (WHO) has recently reported that the BA.2 subvariant is steadily increasing in prevalence, that Omicron has become the dominant VOC globally, rapidly replacing other circulating variants.