Astrotech ASTC Stock News

Astrotech Corp (NASDAQ: ASTC) is making a run for the top in the market this morning, gaining in multiples after announcing that it is developing new equipment. In particular, the equipment will be developed as a screening tool for lung diseases, including COVID-19. Here’s what’s happening:

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ASTC Stock Climbs On COVID-19 Screening Tool Development

In the press release, Astrotech said that it is developing the BreathTest-1000. The test is being developed to screen for volatile organic compound metabolites found in a person’s breath. These VOC matabolites have the potential to indicate the existance of an infection.

In particular, the company said that the test will be able to detect COVID-19 and the resulting disease, pneumonia.

Importantly, ASTC said that the test will be developed using its unique mass spectrometry technology. This technology was initially developed with the help of NASA, the United States Army and the TSA. The tech is ideal for lung disease testing applications, which the company says are now under development.

In a statement, Thomas B. Pickens III, Chairman and CEO at ASTC, had the following to offer:

With the Coronavirus pandemic impacting millions of families around the globe, we are now very focused on the development of a rugged, inexpensive, quick, and easy to use testing platform that can be deployed to thousands of point-of-care locations worldwide, if approved. This is an incredibly scalable solution that is very much needed to screen as many people as possible in the shortest time.

In the press release, Astrotech also said that it will be launching a subsidiary company, known as BreathTech Corporation. BreathTech will hold the exclusive license to use its 1st Detect Technology for breath analysis.

Why This News Is So Important

Diagnostic testing is the first key to putting an end to any pandemic, and COVID-19 is indeed a pandemic. Unfortunately children are not going to school, consumers are afraid to go to the store, churches, restaurants, and events are being shut down. Life is different today than it was just a couple of months ago, and it continues to change.

At the moment, there are multiple tests for coronavirus available. OPKO Health (NASDAQ: OPK) has diagnostic tests already being performed across the United States. However, these tests take time to produce results.

Aytu BioScience (NASDAQ: AYTU) recently announced the commercial availability of its rapid test, providing results in 10 minutes or less. However, Aytu’s tests require blood.

If ASTC can quickly develop its coronavirus rapid test, it may quickly become the leading test in the United States and around the world. The test is administered by a patient breathing into a tube. There are no finger pricks, and due to the technology, the test provides results incredibly quickly.

Ulitmately, if all goes well, the test provided by ASTC will be the least invasive and fastest reporting COVID-19 test on the market. That, my friends, is valuable!

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