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II-VI ramps output of diagnostic testing parts to battle Covid-19

31 Mar 2020

Components and subassemblies for molecular diagnosis of polymerase chain reaction testing to boost researchers' resources.

II-VI, a developer of lasers, optics, and subassemblies for the life sciences sector, has announced that it is ramping up its manufacturing capacity of components and subassemblies for molecular diagnostic testing systems, specifically those that underpin the polymerase chain reaction (PCR) testing platforms of its customers.

II-VI is ramping up its global manufacturing and supply chain to produce thermoelectric subassemblies, across its global manufacturing footprint, to meet the recent and anticipated sustained surge in demand in the PCR system supply chain due to the spread of COVID-19.

The increasing deployment of PCR test equipment at the healthcare point of service is driving the accelerating demand for II-VI’s precision subsystems that integrate its thermoelectric and optical components and allow the rapid replication and identification of target genetic sequence.

“We are proud of all of our employees around the world for their tireless dedication to the life sciences ecosystems organized to overcome COVID-19,” commented Dr. Chuck Mattera, the company’s CEO.

PCR systems have challenging requirements for simultaneously applying a highly uniform and rapid rate of temperature change across the genetic sample to drive replication. II-VI’s thermoelectric products, designed in Dallas, Texas, and manufactured in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, meet both the stringent performance requirements and the reliability endurance of hundreds of thousands of rapid temperature cycles.

Leveraging its advanced optical coating capabilities in Santa Rosa, California, II-VI designs and manufactures industry-leading optical filters with high transmission, steep slopes, and deep out-of-band blocking, enabling PCR systems to achieve very high sensitivity in detecting viral genetic material. II-VI is dedicating additional coating machines to meet the PCR-driven production ramp requirements.

Open letter to photonics community

Dr Mattera last week penned a letter to the photonics business community, as follows:

“At II-VI, we recognize that the situation we face today with COVID-19 is beyond anything any one of us has ever seen. I would like to sincerely wish you, your families, and loved ones a safe and healthy passage through these trying times.

“II-VI operates in over 60 locations in 18 countries. To get through this period of uncertainty, we have implemented plans, policies, and procedures to help safeguard the health and safety of our employees and the hygiene and security of our facilities in the communities around the world where we work and live.

“You may be interested to know that II-VI plays a key role in the supply chain for polymerase chain reaction (PCR) genetic sequencing instruments that are helping to determine the outcome of patient testing for COVID-19. II-VI is a global leader in delivering thermal and optical components to the leading providers of these instruments.

“We are leveraging our values: I CARE—Integrity, Collaboration, Accountability, Respect, and Enthusiasm—as the bedrock principles upon which we will weather this crisis together with all our stakeholders in all our communities. We remain driven by one guiding purpose: enabling the world to be safer, healthier, closer, and more efficient.”

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