iMM Covid-19 Diagnostic

The Instituto de Medicina Molecular João Lobo Antunes (iMM) developed a protocol to track the presence of coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), the virus that causes COVID-19, from nasopharyngeal or oropharyngeal swabs. The protocol is based on the test developed by CDC “Center for Disease Control and Prevention” (CDC), and follows all the guidelines regarding the handling and analysis of clinical specimens.

The protocol consists in two fundamental steps: the extraction of genetic material from the virus (RNA), after its inactivation, and its detection by real time PCR (qPCR). This test is very sensitive, and can detect if the virus is present, even in people without the symptoms. The reagents used in this protocol are produced in Portugal, by the biotechnology company NZYTech.

The iMM capacity allows doing 300 daily tests. The task force of 100 volunteers divided into 5 teams that guarantee all the laboratory analysis process of the samples.

It is important to highlight all the efforts to implement this protocol in other Portuguese research units in the area of biomedicine.

The protocol signed between the Ministério do Trabalho, Solidariedade e Segurança Social and iMM will allow the laboratory analysis of samples from nursing homes in Portugal.

You can read the protocol here.

Relevant Links


SARS-CoV-2, COVID-19, Protocol, Test

Associated Users




Instituto de Medicina Molecular João Lobo Antunes


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