The work by the ‘The Native Antigen Company’ marks a significant step forward in the fight against the disease.

It has developed new non-crossreactive Zika Virus immunoassays which are more sensitive and accurate than current tests and can distinguish between Zika and similar viruses, such as Dengue.

Dr Nick Roesen, chief operating officer of The Native Antigen Company, said: “The Zika virus poses a significant global risk and there is currently no vaccine or specific treatment available.

“Sensitive and specific assays are crucial to mapping the spread of Zika, developing new vaccines and ultimately to finding a way to stop the birth defects associated with the virus.”

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