Shares in biotechnology firm Novacyt rocket to record high after it launches test for coronavirus

Shares in biotechnology firm Novacyt rocketed to a record high after it launched a test for the coronavirus.

The AIM-listed group’s test is CE-Mark approved, which means it complies with the EU’s health and safety rules. The company believes this is the only test for the flu-like virus – which has killed more than 1,300 people in China since the outbreak began in December – that has gained the CE-Mark rubber stamp.

Boost: Novacyt's test is CE-Mark approved, which means it complies with the EU's health and safety rules

Boost: Novacyt’s test is CE-Mark approved, which means it complies with the EU’s health and safety rules

Novacyt has already received 288,000 inquiries about the test since it was made available to order on Friday. The test, which is designed and manufactured in Southampton, does not need a doctor to oversee it and can deliver a result within two hours.

Novacyt shares jumped 67.7 per cent, or 67p, to 166p. Shares have soared since the firm unveiled a research-use only test on January 31.

If someone had invested £1,000 into Novacyt at the start of this year, when shares were trading at 13p, they would have almost £12,800 now. And if they had invested £1,000 in October, when it was worth 6.5p per share, they would have more than £25,500 now.

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