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Wednesday 3 June 2020

MAScIR Foundation Plans To Manufacture 10,000 Covid-19 Diagnostic Kits Before End of June

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MAScIR Foundation Plans To Manufacture 10,000 Covid-19 Diagnostic Kits Before End of June

The MAScIR Foundation (Moroccan Foundation for advanced science, innovation and research) plans to manufacture 10,000 Covid-19 diagnostic kits before the end of June 2020, said, on Wednesday in Rabat, director general of the Foundation Nawal Chraibi.

During a press briefing on the presentation of the first 100% Moroccan kit for the diagnosis of Covid-19, designed by the medical biotechnology center of the MAScIR Foundation, Chraibi stressed that "as of March 12, when the World Health Organization (WHO) described the Covid-19 as a pandemic, our medical biotechnology team took the initiative by drawing on the expertise of the past 10 years to develop the diagnostic kit for the SARS-COV-2".

After having presented the medical biotechnology center, as being a facility which houses the research work of ten years over the development of kits for molecular diagnosis of certain prevalent infectious and cancer diseases in Morocco and Africa and the development of a platform dedicated to biosimilar drugs, Chraibi noted that this new Covid-19 diagnostic kit which was designed in record time, was "recognized for its singularity due to its composition, its characteristics and sensitivity after it has been compared to the routine kits used in national reference laboratories."

To this end, the Director General explained that "upon validation of the kit in our laboratory, it underwent clinical trials on a sample of 450 patients with Covid-19", thus demonstrating very high performance. She indicated that at present, the objective has been set for manufacturing 10,000 kits before the end of June 2020, and then going towards a more substantial production which would cover the national demand.

For their part, the researchers at the medical biotechnology center of the MAScIR Foundation and members of the kit design team, doctors Abdeladim Moumen, Zineb Qmichou, Imane Abdellaoui Maane, Hassan Ait Benhassou, Hicham El Hadi, and Hassan Sefrioui, expressed their satisfaction with this 100% Moroccan innovation, and explained the steps that led to the development of the "MAScIR SARS-COV 2 kit".

"This kit, which required a working period of 2 months, went through three major stages, namely the extraction of ribonucleic acid (RNA) from the SARS-COV 2 virus, reverse transcriptase as well as amplification of virus detection", they explained, adding that once developed, this test was subjected to a series of validation processes in reference biological and virological centers, nationally and internationally as the Pasteur Institute of Paris.

MAP 03 June 2020