27 Jul 2020
A shipment of 50,000 COVID-19 diagnostic kits developed by Slovak scientists arrived in Nairobi, Kenya, on Monday, July 27.
BRATISLAVA, NAIROBI – SlovakAid, a humanitarian relief program of the Slovak Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs, sent a plane from Bratislava on Sunday carrying COVID-19 supplies, which arrived in Nairobi on Monday morning. The supplies include 50,000 diagnostic tests, one PCR thermocycler device to perform the tests and 20,000 FFP2 respirators.
ESET supported the development of the kit, which was approved by the Slovak Republic’s State Institute for Drug Control (ŠUKL) on May 14, 2020, and registered in EUDAMED on May 26, 2020, for distribution in Europe as a CE-marked in vitro diagnostic test. The kit, called vDetect COVID-19 RT-qPCR, was developed through the collaborative research of scientists from the Slovak company MultiplexDX, the Biomedical Research Center of the Slovak Academy of Sciences, the Comenius University Science Park in Bratislava, and experts from Lambda Life and ProScience Tech.
“As one of the key contributors in making the COVID-19 diagnostic kit a reality, ESET is happy to see that countries in need of assistance, such as Kenya, are also able to benefit from our efforts. We are ready to provide assistance for similar undertakings in the future,” said Palo Luka, Chief Operating Officer of ESET.
Pavol Čekan, founder of MultiplexDX, commented, “We rapidly developed a new PCR test for COVID-19 that can reliably help diagnose early-stage patients. Having provided enough test kits to address the needs of Slovak laboratories, we turned our efforts to stepping up production for other countries, such as Kenya, that could benefit from our products.”
With the assistance of State Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Slovak Republic Ingrid Brocková and State Secretary of the Ministry of the Interior of the Slovak Republic Ján Lazar, the relief supplies were presented to a representative of the Embassy of the Republic of Kenya in Austria on Friday, July 24.
State Secretary Ingrid Brocková stated, “Kenya is one of the three development cooperation program countries of the Slovak Republic and our strategic partner in sub-Saharan Africa. It is therefore understandable that we also want to help its people in the fight against the new coronavirus. I am glad that the humanitarian shipment also includes unique diagnostic tests, developed by a team of Slovak scientists.”
Additional information about testing kits:
Key components of the vDetect COVID-19 RT-qPCR diagnostic kit were developed by MultiplexDX, a company dedicated to developing and manufacturing various innovative molecular diagnostic reagents. The quantitative in vitro diagnostic test is designed to detect the presence of SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus genetic information by RT-qPCR in body fluid samples taken primarily from the upper respiratory tract. The vDetect COVID-19 kit is one of the most accurate, universal and sensitive RT-qPCR tests on the market and is intended for use in the diagnostic laboratory only. It is certified by the Slovak Republic’s State Institute for Drug Control. ESET will continue to oversee the further development of the kit, which is also commercially available.
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