ITHACA, NY – A developer of molecular testing based in Ithaca says its COVID testing equipment is capable of detecting the new omicron variant.

Rheonix announced the news just days after omicron was labeled a variant of concern by the World Health Organization.

Working over Thanksgiving weekend, Rheonix scientists worked with publicly available coronavirus sequence data to determine that its MDx Assay could recognize omicron.

The MDx received emergency use authorization in April of 2020.

Vice President of Strategy and Marketing Brooke Schwartz says the company’s equipment allowed small and medium sized hospitals to get their test results much faster than sending them out to regional labs.

“Our immediate action within New York State in particular was game changing and changed the trajectory of testing and response to the pandemic in the early days. We really did enable customers to be able to turn results around in 24 hours versus 2 weeks,” says Schwartz.

In May of 2020, the City of Binghamton announced that it was purchasing Rheonix equipment and testing supplies to be used by UHS to both test city employees and hospital staff and patients.