Guangzhou Pluslife Biotechnology (Pluslife, Guangzhou, China) and the Foundation for Innovative New Diagnostics (FIND, Geneva, Switzerland) have entered into a strategic collaboration to support low- and middle-income countries (LMICs) in the development of diagnostic tools for women’s healthcare by providing access to next generation point of care (POC) molecular testing technology.
The COVID-19 pandemic has posed huge challenges to global public health and welfare, especially in LMICs. FIND, the global alliance for diagnostics that seeks to ensure equitable access to reliable diagnosis around the world, has realized that POC molecular diagnostic (MDx) platforms with multiple target detection play a significant role in earlier detection of SARS-CoV-2 infection and reducing its transmission. However, the centralized format and high prices of current MDx platforms have led to inadequate diagnostic capabilities. Hence, decentralized and affordable POC MDx platforms can enable more effective control of SARS-CoV-2 and other infections, such as HIV/HCV/HBV/HPV, and other bacterial infections.
One of the most significant characteristics of Pluslife’s next-generation POC molecular diagnostics is a multi-scenario application, which enables the decentralization of MDx in LMICs. During pandemics and periods high prevalence of infectious diseases, MDx platforms under a centralized format are often overloaded with samples due to extremely high testing volumes. The Pluslife next generation POC molecular system can ease the burden on the entire health system by allowing tests to be conducted with a fast set-up time and without any constraints. Through the collaboration with FIND, Pluslife Biotech plans to make valuable contributions to foster the adoption of a decentralized POC platform by LMICs with a focus on affordability and reliability.
The collaboration between Pluslife and FIND aims to strengthen the MDx platforms in LMICs by providing affordable POC MDx platforms to increase accessibility to essential diagnostics and tests for women. Currently, only 1% of primary healthcare facilities have access to essential diagnostics, and some tests that are specifically required for women are not available to all women in LMICs. Applying the Pluslife POC molecular system in such resource-limited settings can increase the testing capability in primary healthcare facilities in an efficient and economic manner and rapidly expand its usage to lower-level medical facilities such as clinics and test centers. Pluslife will remain dedicated to its collaboration with FIND, and both parties will together make diagnosis more accessible to improve the living standards of the people in LMICs.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated the advancement of technologies that have the potential to make a huge impact. Point-of-care molecular testing, with the capacity to test for multiple diseases, can help us change the question from ‘is this COVID?’ to ‘what is this?’, in primary care clinics where most people first seek care,” said Dr. Marta Fernández Suárez, Chief Technology Officer at FIND. “We are pleased to be partnering with Pluslife to explore the potential of their promising technology as part of our mission to realize diagnosis for all.”
“Pluslife and FIND shared the same goal to spur diagnostic innovation and make diagnostic more accessible to LMICs, it is truly a significant social responsibility for Pluslife to honor,” commented Pluslife CEO Noah Chen, “Pluslife Next-Generation POC molecular system will be launched as a reform of LMICs health system, to improve the efficiency of testing and the resilience of the different health channels, and finally achieves more accessible and affordable test for all.”