(Reuters) – Co-Diagnostics Inc said on Thursday demand for its coronavirus test kits had surged as the outbreak spreads and after the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) allowed labs to use tests before authorization, sending its shares up 31%.
Shares of the molecular diagnostic test maker have more than tripled since Jan. 23, when the company said it had completed designing a screening test for the new coronavirus.
The FDA said last week it would allow some laboratories to immediately use the tests they have developed and validated, while they await FDA’s emergency-use authorization, to achieve more rapid testing capacity for the coronavirus in the country.
This has cleared the way for state public health labs to immediately begin local testing and possibly get results within hours.
Co-Diagnostics said international interest for its kit has grown, and that it has received numerous requests from U.S. clinical laboratories for its reagents to be used according to the FDA’s new policy.
The Trump administration met with private lab test developers on Wednesday to discuss increasing the availability of tests for the coronavirus and said that the companies had formed a consortium.
(Reporting By Mrinalika Roy in Bengaluru)