Concepta launches at-home Covid test, announces name change
Healthcare company Concepta announced the launch of its DNA testing service on Wednesday, following the recent acquisition of the Genome Store.
The AIM-traded firm said it was launching the service under its new ‘MyHealthChecked’ brand, adding that the first test swab kit available would be a “fast and reliable” direct-to-consumer Covid-19 lab-based PCR test available to the UK public via a new e-commerce website.
It said the MyHealthChecked Covid-19 testing service would use the ‘Clarigene’ SARS-CoV-2 test supplied by Yourgene Health, and the ‘PrimeStore’ MTM sample collection device supplied by EKF Diagnostic Holdings.
The MyHealthChecked testing service would allow samples to be taken at home using nasal collection swabs, which would then be sent for processing using established laboratory-based DNA and RNA detection methods.
Concepta said the newly-acquired team had delivered the launch of the Covid-19 testing service to an efficient timescale, enabling an awareness drive to the public ahead of the Christmas period, at a time when people were making holiday plans.
The company said it was expecting to launch a number of DNA tests covering a range of female and male wellness, food intolerance and lifestyle testing, and further develop a pipeline of tests from the first quarter of 2021.
“As our pipeline development continues and we invest in our plans to build a sustainable, long term business, we're proud to be delivering on this short-term opportunity with a high quality, highly accurate coronavirus swab kit and testing service,” said chief executive officer Penny McCormick.
“Our priority is to look beyond the pandemic with a range of affordable, meaningful at-home test kits, but it would be remiss of us - now with the expertise and operational channel in-house - not to make this kit available to the public.”
Concepta’s board added that, as the UK government geared up for the future arrival of vaccines, the requirement for at-home testing kits was expected to continue.
It noted that last week, the Transport Secretary announced a new testing scheme from 15 December for people travelling into England from overseas, advising that the purchase of a private test and a negative coronavirus result could reduce quarantine periods by more than half.
“The government is providing clear guidelines and instructions regarding international travel, and the meeting of familial and friendship groups over Christmas, and people are sensibly deciding to what level they wish to operate within that framework,” McCormick added.
“We fully support the government's testing programme, whilst providing a solution for those who wish to test independently for requirements like travel, or for personal reasons.”
In addition, Concepta also confirmed that it would change its name to MyHealthChecked, with trading on AIM under the new name expected to take effect “in due course”, and the company's stock exchange ticker also expected to change to MHC from CPT.
At 0932 GMT, shares in Concepta were up 34.38% at 2.15p.