FDA Approves Curative Inc's COVID-19 Test

Rachel Uranga

Rachel Uranga is dot.LA's Managing Editor, News. She is a former Mexico-based market correspondent at Reuters and has worked for several Southern California news outlets, including the Los Angeles Business Journal and the Los Angeles Daily News. She has covered everything from IPOs to immigration. Uranga is a graduate of the Columbia School of Journalism and California State University Northridge. A Los Angeles native, she lives with her husband, son and their felines.

FDA Approves Curative Inc's COVID-19 Test
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The Food and Drug Administration approved COVID-19 testing startup Curative Inc.'s saliva test for emergency use — opening up the door to larger-scale distribution.

The move by the federal agency provides a hopeful sign for the company which is working to develop mass at-home testing that could be used to help open up the country's economy.


As of Friday, 3.5 million people have been tested in the United States, according to data from Johns Hopkins University. But as officials from President Donald Trump on down look to jumpstart the national economy and lift stay-at-home orders, the availability of testing will need to be widespread, public health experts say.

Curative has processed 57,700 tests, nearly a quarter of all those administered in California, Curative founder Fred Turner said on Twitter Friday. Turner set up shop in a San Dimas lab last month and became an unsung hero in the battle to combat coronavirus in Southern California when he turned the focus of his company, originally meant to detect sepsis, to the pandemic.

The tests take a little over a day to process and have been among the quickest turnarounds in the region. Curative is processing about 5,000 test results daily and producing 20,000 test kits a day. The test has been used since March 21, but with this approval, Curative can further ramp up production and distribute nationwide.

The saliva tests pose less risk to health care workers than the tests that require a nurse to swab inside a person's nose. The company has been testing first responders in Los Angeles County.

With this authorization, the company said, it was prepared to start working with new distributors including healthcare systems, states, and city governments.

Hospitals, grocery stores and warehouses are all struggling to figure out how to keep essential workers safe. More than 22 million people have filed for unemployment since the pandemic erupted in the United States and employers are struggling to figure out how to keep essential workers safe.

Abbott Laboratories Inc. announced this week it would begin shipping a new coronavirus blood test that can tell whether a person has ever been infected with hopes of ramping up to to produce 20 million tests a month by June.

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Behind Her Empire: Lisa Sequino on the ‘Light Bulb’ Moment That Launched JLo Beauty

Yasmin Nouri

Yasmin is the host of the "Behind Her Empire" podcast, focused on highlighting self-made women leaders and entrepreneurs and how they tackle their career, money, family and life.

Each episode covers their unique hero's journey and what it really takes to build an empire with key lessons learned along the way. The goal of the series is to empower you to see what's possible & inspire you to create financial freedom in your own life.

Behind Her Empire: Lisa Sequino on the ‘Light Bulb’ Moment That Launched JLo Beauty
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EXCLUSIVE: Fisker CEO Isn't Worried About Tesla Competition

David Shultz

David Shultz reports on clean technology and electric vehicles, among other industries, for dot.LA. His writing has appeared in The Atlantic, Outside, Nautilus and many other publications.

A Fisker electric vehicle.​
Courtesy of Fisker

Last week in the dot.LA newsletter I wrote about Tesla’s decision to slash prices by as much as 20% on their vehicles and how the decision might impact Southern California’s EV startups. I called the price cuts a “tough pill to swallow” for Fisker in particular since they would make many of Tesla’s price points more competitive with Fisker’s first production model, The Ocean.

The Ocean is currently undergoing homologation, but Henrik Fisker, the company’s CEO, confirmed to dot.LA that the company hopes the process to be completed at the end of February. From there, it could take several weeks to ship the SUVs from Austria to the United States.

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