U.S. FDA authorizes Roche's monkeypox test

The logo of Swiss drugmaker Roche is seen at its headquarters in Basel, Switzerland January 30, 2020. REUTERS/Arnd Wiegmann/File Photo/File Photo

Nov 15 (Reuters) - The U.S. health regulator on Tuesday issued an emergency use authorization to Roche's (ROG.S) test for the detection of DNA from monkeypox virus in swab specimens collected from people suspected of the virus infection.

The tests will be conducted on the Swiss company's cobas systems, which can also detect HIV, hepatitis B and C viruses.

The Food and Drug Administration said testing will be limited to laboratories that meet the requirements to perform moderate or high complexity tests.

While around 80,000 cases of monkeypox have been reported in nearly 100 countries since the outbreak started earlier this year, the number of cases have declined from the peak in August. Over 28,000 cases have been reported in the United States in the outbreak this year, including two deaths.

The World Health Organization continues to classify the disease as a public health emergency of international concern, which is its highest level of alert. The U.S. has also declared the disease a public health emergency.

Reporting by Leroy Leo in Bengaluru; Editing by Shailesh Kuber

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