Braveheart Investment Group PLC (AIM:BRH) has drawn attention to an operational update from investee company Paraytec, which is developing a Covid-19 test.
The Paraytec team and its collaborators at Sheffield University say they are confident that the test will work with Omicron and other variants of Covid-19, as Paraytec’s test to detect the coronavirus uses antibodies to attach a specific fluorescent dye to the surface of each virus particle. The antibodies used in Paraytec’s test have been selected to recognise the viral Spike protein. While mutations in the Omicron variant give rise to over 30 amino acid changes in the Spike protein, all of these occur in a region of the protein that is distinct from that recognised by the antibodies selected for the Paraytec test.
While it is obviously important for the test to work, from a commercial perspective it is also crucial that the test be relatively cheap to produce and the latest design analysis suggests that the production cost will be less than £2 per test cartridge.
Similarly, the projected manufacturing cost of the CX300 instrument, required to analyse the patient specimen and provide the test result, is likely to be in the region of £1,500 per instrument. This relatively low cost means that CX300 instruments could be offered for a nominal charge with a minimum initial purchase of cartridges, a marketing and business model successfully pursued by printer manufacturers, razor blade manufacturers and others.