NEW YORK – Hamilton Storage and early-stage Harvard University spinout Rhinostics announced on Tuesday a collaboration to improve decapping and accessioning patient samples.
The partners plan to join Hamilton's LabElite DeCapper automated tube capping instrument and the Rhinostic swab collection device to provide hands-free and high-throughput sample processing and improve bottlenecks during clinical sample processing for SARS-CoV-2 and other tests. The agreement will include co-promoting both devices, along with marketing and educational plans to spread awareness of the combination.
The Rhinostic nasal and buccal swab collection device contains a polypropylene-based swab and an automatable cap. The swab is placed into a barcoded sample container and doesn't require viral transport media, which has often been in short supply throughout the pandemic. Hamilton said in a statement that the lack of VTM also "reduces reagent costs as well as risks of leaking, accidental biohazard contact, and variability due to VTM composition" and allows for greater sample concentrations.
The LabElite DeCapper automates capping and decapping of tubes and vials with internal or external threads in 24-, 48-, or 96-tube racks, increasing sample processing speed. To process the Rhinostic device, the DeCapper requires a 12-channel head and a conversion kit, which can be added to DeCappers already in the field.