HHS awards $4.1 million to Hologic to develop better Zika blood screening test
Today, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response announced a $4.1 million agreement with Hologic, of Marlborough, Massachusetts, to advance the development of a blood screening test that will help detect the presence of Zika in the blood supply.
This is the second blood screening test ASPR’s Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA) is helping advance that may be used to test donated blood for Zika. In April, ASPR announced support of a clinical study of a Zika blood screening test developed by Roche Molecular Systems, of Branchburg, New Jersey, to confirm whether that test accurately detects the virus in donor blood.
“Accurate blood-screening tools are vital to protecting our nation’s blood supply from Zika. This test may provide another tool laboratories can use to identify infected blood donations to help ensure patients’ safety,” said Dr. Richard Hatchett, BARDA’s acting director. “At the same time, we are pursuing promising diagnostic tools, and vaccines to identify and prevent Zika virus infections.”