A LABORATORY has launched a new Covid-19 antibody test and offered to send one to the Prime Minister’s chief adviser, Dominic Cummings, after his controversial trip to the region.

Mr Cummings came under fire in May after allegations broke that he breached lockdown rules by visiting his parents’ home in County Durham, with many claiming he repeatedly visited Teesdale.

Barnard Castle-based firm Honeyman, has announced the introduction of a high accuracy, rapid turnaround Covid-19 antibody testing service and said they would send one to Mr Cummings.

Staff said he would not even need to make a return visit to the region, as the blood samples are picked up and returned within 24 hours.

Tom Honeyman, managing director of the firm said: “We will happily extend the offer of a test to Dominic Cummings. The process is that an employer’s occupational health team or one of our clinical partners organises for a blood sample to be taken and sent to our laboratory in Barnard Castle for serology, we return results within 24 hours."

Honeyman has partnered with Quotient Limited to launch the new, highly sensitive antibody test using Quotient’s high-throughput MosaiQ platform.

Detecting antibodies with sensitivity, the MosaiQ equipment claims to process up to 3,000 samples a day using Honeyman’s sample collection network.

The company is the only laboratory to provide antibody and Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) sample turnaround in less than 24 hours from collection throughout the UK and Ireland.

The test is designed to detect infection at an early stage.

Mr Honeyman said: "Dual antibody detection is a significant step forward. Existing approved test methods used within the UK only provide for Immunoglobulin G antibody detection, but research has shown that not everyone has this reaction.

"Quotient’s MosaiQ™ Covid-19 Antibody Microarray additionally picks-up the instances in which people have an Immunoglobulin M response.

"This systematic approach is proving popular with businesses responsible for managing large workforces.”