Photo Credit: NIAID-RML / flickr
This transmission electron microscope image shows SARS-CoV-2—also known as 2019-nCoV, the virus that causes COVID-19. isolated from a patient in the U.S., emerging from the surface of cells cultured in the lab.

An Israeli technology and medical laboratory systems firm announced Thursday that its biomedical division has developed a new rapid and accurate diagnostics kit for the COVID-19 novel coronavirus.

The kit allows laboratories to detect whether a patient has the novel coronavirus within approximately 25 minutes.

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BATM Advanced, based in Hod Hasharon, said in a release that “the kit has undergone testing by several central laboratories and hospitals that have now verified its ability to diagnose COVID-19.”

Production of the kit has begun at the Adaltis facility in Rome, according to firm, which said it is working with academic and research institutions in Europe in order to produce the kit at an affordable price “suitable for large scale production.”

The kit “supports all the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommendations,” the firm said. In addition, COVID-19 will be included with the firm’s Ador suite of testing kits as part of its travel panels, the firm said. Laboratory bench tests are expected to start shortly.

“We have already received extremely positive feedback and significant interest from several leading medical institutions that have started testing the first panel of Ador’s NATlab solution and adding COVID-19 will greatly strengthen its appeal and value,” Dr. Zvi Marom, BATM CEO said.

At present, testing for the virus is an involved process that takes several days at least.

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Hana Levi Julian is a Middle East news analyst with a degree in Mass Communication and Journalism from Southern Connecticut State University. A past columnist with The Jewish Press and senior editor at Arutz 7, Ms. Julian has written for Babble.com, Chabad.org and other media outlets, in addition to her years working in broadcast journalism.