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Source Molecular, LuminUltra Partner for SARS-CoV-2 Environmental Testing

NEW YORK – Pathogen testing firms Source Molecular and LuminUltra said on Monday that they have partnered to support increased environmental testing for SARS-CoV-2 virus in North America. 

Miami-based Source Molecular offers laboratory testing to help identify sources of contamination in the environment, while LuminUltra, a company based in Fredericton, New Brunswick, Canada, has developed a qPCR testing system called GeneCount for rapid, on-site environmental testing. The partnership will give customers the option to use the LuminUltra system for on-site SARS-CoV-2 testing, or lab-based pathogen testing capabilities from Source Molecular.

Financial terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

Areas of North America are now beginning to reopen after weeks of lockdown during the COVID-19 pandemic. "Enabling the economy to stay open amidst inevitable flare-ups and emerging hotspots will demand widespread environmental testing for the presence of SARS-CoV-2," LuminUltra CEO Pat Whalen said. Environmental molecular testing can specifically be used to survey schools, restaurants, or offices, as well as to evaluate population health through wastewater system monitoring. 

"Organizations can now utilize qPCR testing to maximize facility safety and be alerted to even asymptomatic virus spread among employees, students, or residents, either onsite via LuminUltra's GeneCount qPCR system or remotely through our partnership with Source Molecular," Whalen said. 

LuminUltra, said its GeneCount qPCR system requires minimal training to collect, process, and analyze samples in less than two hours, and can process 14 samples at a time.

"Consistent environmental testing and rapid remediation can help spell the difference between widespread exposures and prolonged closures, and the ability to quickly and decisively certify the health of a facility and keep the doors open," added Whelan.