“The Saudi Medical Vaccines Company” signs an agreement with "Sona Nanotechnology" to cooperate in the field of developing and proving the effectiveness of a modern diagnostic test for COVID-19
On June 30th, 2020, SaudiVax Ltd. signed a Collaborative Agreement with Sona Nanotech Inc. (Sona), the developer of a COVID-19 point-of-care, antigen test with the ability to detect the virus in patients with ‘low’ viral loads in 10-15 minutes, as compared to RT-PCR testing which typically takes 24-48 hours to detect the virus.
The primary purpose of the signed collaboration is to expand Sona’s technology leadership position in infectious disease diagnostics and to ensure SaudiVax competitiveness in providing a solution to support global health for the Organization of Islamic Cooperation member states and the safety of pilgrimage visitors to the Kingdom. SaudiVax will conduct the validation study in Saudi Arabia in collaboration with the King Fahd Medical Research Center at King Abdulaziz University under the signed MOU between SV & KFMRC on the 5th of February, 2020.
In anticipation of the local clinical validation by SaudiVax, Sona has also signed an official Letter of Intent as well as a Distribution Agreement to support its go to market strategy for Saudi Arabia, the GCC region and beyond with Bassam Trading Company in partnership with Ascend Healthcare Solutions. This will provide the region an advantage in getting access to innovative diagnostic technology in its concerted response to the COVID-19 outbreak.
Additionally, Sona and SaudiVax’s collaboration will focus on advancing technologies in the area of future infectious disease diagnostics and considering the opportunity of local manufacturing in line with the Kingdom’s Vision 2030 to drive a knowledge-based economy.
About SaudiVax Ltd: SaudiVax is a leading biotechnology company in the Kingdom and a joint venture of “UYC Inc.” of Saudi Arabia and “PnuVax Inc.” of the USA. The objective of SaudiVax is to localize biotechnology in Saudi Arabia, the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), & the Organisation of Islamic Countries (OIC). Saudivax is particularly keen to ensure national health security by supporting the region’s pandemic preparedness plans against infectious diseases. In alignment with the Saudi Vision 2030, SaudiVax is promoting women employment in the biotechnology sector, and supporting the creation of high-income jobs for highly educated and talented Saudi graduates. Saudivax is striving to be the 1st local manufacturer for “high demand” biotechnology products, creating a label in Saudi Arabia, and for exporting to the OIC members, to build needed ecosystems covering research, development, education, and training to secure technology and knowledge transfer. SaudiVax is led by Dr. Donald Gerson, Prof. Mazen Hassanain, Eng. Jonas Gerson with a group of elite Saudi scientists’ collaborators.
About Sona Nanotech: Sona Nanotech Inc. (Sona) is a nanotechnology life sciences firm that has developed multiple proprietary methods for the manufacture of various types of gold nanoparticles. The principal business carried out and intended to be continued by Sona is the development and application of its proprietary technologies for use in multiplex diagnostic testing platforms that will improve performance over existing tests in the market. Sona’s gold nanorod particles are CTAB (cetyltrimethylammonium) free, eliminating the toxicity risks associated with the use of other gold nanorod technologies in medical applications. It is expected that Sona’s gold nanotechnologies may be adapted for use in applications, as a safe and effective delivery system for multiple medical treatments, pending the approval of various regulatory boards including Health Canada and the FDA.
About King Fahd Medical Research Center: King Fahd Medical Research Center (KFMRC) is a leading multidisciplinary medical research center established in 1980 at King Abdulaziz University, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. The center represents a cornerstone in the medical complex at King Abdulaziz University as it plays a critical role in tackling local and regional research priorities. The center strives to be a leading national and regional medical research center through high quality basic, translational, and clinical research in addition to advanced diagnostic services and with a focus on biotechnology. KFMRC provides an outstanding research environment to support research activities of students, researchers, and scientists from King Abdulaziz University as well as other local universities and institutes.
About Ascend Healthcare Solutions: Ascend Healthcare Solutions (Ascend), a subsidiary of Al Fozan Holding Company, is a holistic healthcare solutions provider working with clients to solve their greatest challenges in delivering best-in-class healthcare to patients in Saudi Arabia. Ascend partners with world leaders in medical devices, digital health, and healthcare providers to seamlessly weave together technology and know-how across the patient’s journey to improve clinical, operational, and financial outcomes. Ascend is the authorized distributor of GE Healthcare Imaging and Ultrasound technology across the Kingdom and through this partnership has access to GE’s global expertise of technology and solutions, allowing it to provide flexibility and breadth within the local market.
About Bassam Trading Company: Bassam Trading Company (BTC) is an integrated regional healthcare and hospitality solutions provider headquartered in Saudi Arabia, serving institutional customers throughout the GCC since 1967. Within the healthcare field, BTC is the established local partner of over 40 recognized global manufacturing groups and has been the regional market leader for Ambulances, Mobile Clinics, Mortuary Equipment, and critical Medical Consumables.