New high-throughput test expected to significantly increase Michigan’s testing
capacity with output of 400 plus tests daily
West Bloomfield, Mich. (April 13, 2020) – Orchard Laboratories, headquartered in West Bloomfield, Mich. (7901 Orchard Lake Road, Suite 100) is the first private laboratory in Michigan to provide rapid testing for Covid-19 with new, state-of-the art equipment using the Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) protocol for the ThermoFisher 7500DX Platform. The new equipment uses Real Time Polymerase Chain Reactions to detect RNA found in the COVID-19 virus. Orchard Laboratories will provide results within 24 hours and will initially be conducting 400 tests per day, with the expectation of reaching 700 plus tests per day within weeks. On April 6, it was reported that 4,444 tests were conducted in the state that day, with 41 percent proving positive per day. This new faster, real-time testing process takes just four hours for processing close to 100 nasopharyngeal swabs and will ultimately provide a significant increase in testing capacity. Orchard Laboratories’ logo plus photos can be found here.
The ThermoFisher 7500DX instrument is one of only a few in Michigan. In March, Thermo Fisher Scientific Inc. announced that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) had issued an EUA for its diagnostic test that can be used immediately by specialist laboratories in the U.S. to detect nucleic acid from SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. Patients and their healthcare providers across the country have experienced ongoing delays in obtaining test results. Orchard Laboratories wanted to do their part to help address the current shortfall of testing in the state.
“We saw the devastating impact this disease was having in Michigan, and how the lack of rapid testing was impacting the ability of medical staff to mitigate the spread of the virus,” explained Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Orchard Laboratories, Sami Ahmad. “By investing in this equipment and working quickly to bring our laboratory up to the necessary codes for COVID-19 testing, we are providing our state with another important tool in fighting this pandemic.” Ahmad and his brother Faisal Ahmad, Orchard Laboratories’ Chief Operating Officer, previously focused the company’s work on toxicology testing for opioid use.
Orchard Laboratories is now open seven-days-a-week to receive Covid-19 testing from urgent care facilities, doctors’ offices, hospitals and nursing homes among other healthcare providers. The laboratory is also in the process of securing equipment to conduct antibody testing for the virus and it hoped this will be launched in the weeks to come.
Orchard Laboratories is a CLIA/COLA Accredited Facility meeting federal clinical laboratory standards.