Tuesday, March 21, 2023
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ABB makes use of robots to automate COVID antibody testing

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ABB Robotics and the College of Texas Medical Department’s (UTMB) Life Sciences and Healthcare Lab have developed an automatic neutralizing antibody testing system. The robotic system can decide a person’s immunity to numerous strains of COVID, and carry out different virus testing. 

The system is ready to enhance the variety of neutralizing antibody exams carried out from 15 a day to over 1,000 every day. 

“The flexibility to hold out extra every day exams is the important thing to producing extra information on particular person immunity profiles that may assist management the additional unfold of the virus,” Dr. Michael Laposata, professor and chairman of the division of Pathology at UTMB, stated. “By reworking the speed at which testing might be carried out and eliminating the necessity for big numbers of laboratory workers being uncovered to the potential danger of an infection in guide testing, the automated system we’ve developed with ABB supplies an correct, quick, versatile and protected approach of assembly our objectives.”

Growing the variety of every day exams may help UTMB researchers higher perceive how efficient COVID vaccines have been. COVID’s many mixed mutations have made it difficult for researchers to find out the best safety for every variant. 

The system goals to detect a SARS-CoV-2 neutralizing antibody with out cross-reaction with different infections. The ensuing information can be utilized by the individual being examined researchers, and native policymakers to assist them make extra knowledgeable selections about how you can reduce the danger of additional spreading the virus. 

“This undertaking is a transparent instance of how robotics can enhance velocity and effectivity, whereas making work safer for the researchers concerned,” Daniel Navarro, Managing Director of Client Segments and Service Robotics at ABB, stated. “Working intently with UTMB, we’re combining our experience [in] biology, lab course of, automation and software program to develop and deploy an automatic robotic answer that considerably advances and informs our response to the COVID pandemic.”

ABB used its RobotStudio offline programming software program to mannequin, iterate and take a look at totally different mixtures of lab gear and robotic positions to develop the system. The complete course of, from inception to operation, took simply 18 months. 

“What we managed to attain on this undertaking inside such a brief area of time is extraordinary—many multimillion-dollar firms take a number of years to create options just like the one we’ve developed in a fraction of the time,” Juan Garcia, director of Laboratory Companies at UTMB, stated.

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