NEW YORK, Dec. 2, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- TNG Dx, LLC, a wholesale distribution and technology solutions company, announced a public health surveillance initiative with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and eTrueNorth to develop a rapid RNA extraction protocol. This protocol can assist clinical laboratories with faster turnaround times for COVID-19 test results increasing the number of individuals who can be tested as part of community-based surveillance.
"The goal of this protocol is to develop a method to increase testing throughput for all open-platform qPCR machines with more comfortable, less invasive specimen collection that can be conducted by the patients themselves without medical personnel," states Dr. Meghan Lockard, Chief Scientific Advisor to TNG Dx, "The protocol uses materials readily available in standard high and moderate complexity clinical laboratories. TNG Dx hopes that the universality of this protocol will facilitate rapid adoption in labs across the U.S."
"This new RNA extraction methodology holds promise to have an overall positive affect on the way clinical laboratories process COVID-19 samples before analysis," said Deputy Surgeon General, RADM Erica Schwartz, HHS. "From a public health perspective, we welcome opportunities to improve the COVID-19 testing process."
TNG Dx collected over 500 paired saliva samples using anterior nasal sampling at the Harris County testing site outside Houston, Texas. This collection was conducted in collaboration with eTrueNorth, the laboratory services company contracted by HHS to process COVID-19 RT-PCR tests.
Coral May, CEO of eTrueNorth, commented "eTrueNorth is happy to partner with other experts to improve any step in the COVID-19 testing process. We want to work with others in any way to reduce the time and effort it takes clinical laboratories to analysis specimens."
TNG Dx has contracted Premier Medical Laboratories in Greenville, SC to perform the clinical and analytical validation studies. TNG Dx expect to have the protocol submitted to the Food and Drug Administration for Emergency Use Authorization by the end of the year.
About Dr. Meghan Lockard
Dr. Meghan A. Lockard earned her Ph.D. from the Rockefeller University in New York City, conducting her thesis in the laboratory of Dr. Cori Bargmann. In business, Dr. Lockard is an independent advisor specializing in early phase startups, small businesses, and non-profits in the life sciences and health tech space. She has advised companies on the development of a vaccine for fentanyl, soft robotic catheters to map atrial fibrillation, and AI for melanoma diagnosis, to name a few. Dr. Lockard teaches at Fordham University, Lincoln Center. She is on the editorial board for the journal Intelligence-Based Medicine, a scientific journal focused on applications of machine learning and AI in clinical practice. Prior, Dr. Lockard worked at Los Alamos National Laboratory's Advanced Measurement Science Group in the Bioscience Division, where she co-patented two inventions. Dr. Lockard is currently engaged as a science advisor for TNG Dx.
About TNG Dx, LLC
TNG Dx, LLC (http://www.tngdiagnostics.com) is a distribution and technology solutions company founded to address the unmet testing needs of the Coronavirus pandemic. TNG Dx provides a world-class COVID-19 RT-PCR reagent testing kit and strong Antigen rapid point-of-care lateral flow kits along with saliva and anterior nasal collection materials and full testing services in partnerships with labs around the US.TNG Dx can be reached for comment at [email protected]
Megan Lockard, Phd
SOURCE TNG Dx LLC