|President Moon Jae-in speaks with representatives of Korean COVID-19 detection kit makers, including SolGent's co-CEO You Jae-hyung, left, at Seegen's office in southern Seoul, Wednesday. Yonhap|
By Jung Min-ho
SolGent, a subsidiary of Korean genome sequencing company EDGC, will export its COVID-19 detection kits to the United States, where cases have been soaring over the past few weeks.
SolGent told The Korea Times Thursday that it has signed a letter of intent (LOI) with several U.S. states, including New York, California and Nevada, to sell its kits (DiaPlexQ) for 1 million tests.
This comes two days after U.S. President Donald Trump asked Korean President Moon Jae-in during a phone conversation for supplies to help combat the disease. Trump then said he would help expedite the process of receiving approval from the Food and Drug Administration for supply providers.
The next day, Moon met representatives of five detection kit makers, including SolGent's co-CEO You Jae-hyung, to thank them for their R&D efforts, saying he was "grateful and proud" of them.
|SolGent's coronavirus detection kit DiaPlexQ / Courtesy of EDGC|
Korea initially struggled with a surge in cases but has appeared to keep the outbreak under control. The government has been praised for its rapid virus-testing program ― 10,000 daily tests ― and many countries, including the United States, are trying to emulate its success.
In the United Sates, one of the worst-hit countries, the virus has infected more than 68,000 people and killed nearly 400 as of Thursday afternoon (KST).
Early this week, SolGent said DiaPlexQ attained CE marking, a certification that demonstrates conformity with health and safety standards for products sold in Europe.
The company has signed a $2 million purchase contract with Synlab, an international medical diagnostics provider based in Germany, for 140,000 kits.