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FDA greenlights new coronavirus antigen test

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The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced Saturday it gave emergency authorization of an antigen test that can quickly detect coronavirus proteins from the swabs of infected patients.

The test, developed by Quidel Corp. in San Diego, Calif., examines samples from the patient’s nasal cavity and is the third type of test to be authorized by the FDA, according to The Associated Press.

The FDA said it expects to authorize similar antigen tests in the future. Quidel claimed its test can provide accurate, automated results in about 15 minutes.

The FDA’s authorization “allows us to arm our health care workers and first responders with a frontline solution for COVID-19 diagnosis, accelerating the time to diagnosis and potential treatment,” Quidel CEO Douglas Bryant said in a statement.

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The company’s stock has more than doubled in value since the beginning of 2020, The AP reported.

This news comes two days after a research study was posted online claiming that most patients who recover from the virus will make antibodies despite age, gender or how badly they were infected.

The study, which has not been reviewed by scientific experts, was authored by doctors from the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York City. It said the vast majority of infected patients who recover from coronavirus become immune to the disease.

As of Saturday morning, there were more than 1.28 million confirmed cases of the coronavirus in the U.S. and over 77,000 deaths.

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There have been more than 8.4 million tests administered in the U.S., 15.3 percent of which came back positive for COVID-19.

The Associated Press contributed to this report 

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