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EU-OPENSCREEN candidate partner site in Israel performs high capacity diagnostics of up to 2000 tests daily.

In response to the SARS-Cov2 pandemic, the Drug Discovery unit of G-INCPM in the Weizmann Institute of Science in Israel, a candidate partner site of EU-OPENSCREEN, underwent significant reconfiguration to enable high capacity diagnostics of up to 2000 tests daily.

By merging the resources of the G-INCPM genomics and the Life Sciences Core Facility virology groups, we established a pipeline of sample to qPCR analysis of infection. The liquid handling automation in the HTS group was adapted to perform magnetic bead-based purification of RNA from nasopharyngeal swabs. Importantly, the collaborations within G-INCPM established a coherent chain of ownership which is vital for clinical diagnostics and reporting to the national ministry of health. Israel is also affected by the supply chain disruptions experienced by much of the international health community. However, the expertise in automation and screening in our Drug Discovery group allowed us to develop generic protocols which could be applied in other laboratories and provide alternative diagnostic assays that are less reliant on specific commercial reagents. For more information please contact Haim Barr: haim.barr@weizmann.ac.il