US-based healthcare company Aegis Sciences has introduced a combined test for SARS-CoV-2 and influenza A/B virus to detect individuals suspecting of respiratory viral infection consistent with Covid-19.

Aegis has developed a combined Covid-19 + Flu A/B reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) molecular test to enable the simultaneous qualitative detection and differentiation of SARS-CoV-2, influenza A virus, and/or influenza B virus.

According to the company, testing of all three viruses at the same time will facilitate efficient testing and diagnosis to help contain the spread of these viruses.

Respiratory specimens for the test are collected through nasopharyngeal, oropharyngeal and nasal mid-turbinate or anterior nares from individuals suspected of respiratory viral infection consistent with Covid-19.

The test allows diagnosis of infection caused by one of three viruses

The multiplex assay is a single test that allows diagnosis of infection caused by one of three viruses, as the symptoms of respiratory viral infection due to SARS-CoV-2 and influenza are similar.

Aegis stated that it has the capacity to conduct 60,000 tests per day within a targeted 24-hour turnaround time.

The company provides testing results to State Departments of Health and to the CDC, as per applicable public health emergency response requirements.

Aegis Sciences CEO Dr Frank Basile said: “With the flu season looming and Covid-19 surging, laboratory testing that can distinguish between SARS-CoV-2 and influenza virus infections and identify coinfection will be critical to patient care and public health response.

“From the beginning, we have been committed to a 24-hour turnaround time for test results. Producing test results that are fast and accurate is even more critical as we enter this season.”

Established in 1990, Aegis Sciences offers science-driven testing and consulting services for clients such as healthcare providers, pharmaceutical companies, Fortune 500 corporations, and government agencies across the US.

In October, Roche unveiled plans to introduce a high-volume SARS-CoV-2 antigen test to diagnose severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 infection.