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New COVID-19 Test Aimed At Expanding Testing, Increasing Accuracy

A new COVID-19 test has been developed in Oklahoma to expand testing and increase the accuracy of the results.

OU Medicine, OU Health Sciences Center, Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation and Fluidigm Corporation collaborated on the new test, which can test 180,000 samples over the next 90 days. Test results are available within about six hours.

Dr. Michael Talbert, the Chief of Pathology Services for OU Medicine, said during an online press conference Thursday that Fluidigm's microfluidics technology was an important part in the creation and validation of this test.

"With microfluidics, not only do we use a small volume of the reagents, it can handle a very high number of tests. And because we're using the microfluidics platform, each test is actually performed five times. Most other testing platforms would do the test once," Talbert said. "With five replicates of the test, we can make sure that the test is performing accurately and precisely."

OU Medicine has applied for Emergency Use Authorization for the test from the FDA. Once approved, OU Medicine will be the only laboratory for now that can conduct this test.

Talbert says OU Medicine is working with both state and county health departments to create more testing swab collection sites.

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