Press Release: New Innovation Makes Coronavirus Rapid Testing More Accurate than Laboratory Tests

Turku, March 28, 2024 – The Finnish infectious disease diagnostics device manufacturer, ArcDia Oy, has introduced a new innovation that makes rapid testing for the coronavirus more accurate than laboratory tests. The new so-called combination test enhances the assessment of the phase and infectivity of COVID-19.

The Finnish mariPOC® diagnostic system, developed and manufactured by ArcDia Oy, is the market leader in automated rapid testing for respiratory tract infections in Finland. Thanks to its ease of use and speed, mariPOC® is particularly suitable for rapid testing of acute infections in primary health care, emergency departments, and pharmacy health points.

New mariPOC® research results were presented at the National Virology Days in Helsinki on March 21, 2024. The study, conducted using commercial mariPOC antigen tests, investigated how the concentrations of the coronavirus in the nasopharynx change during the course of infection. The study also examined the manifestation of the body’s antibody defense response using a new mariPOC® prototype test. According to the results, the disappearance of the virus antigen from the nasopharynx occurs at the same time as the appearance of antibodies. Antibody secretion from the mucous membranes, on the other hand, ceases within a few months. This immune response can be measured significantly longer than the virus genome or the virus itself.

It is well known that PCR laboratory tests can yield a positive result weeks after the patient is no longer contagious. In such situations, antigen tests may appear less sensitive than PCR. In reality, the tests are designed for different purposes and measure different things. The antigen test measures proteins produced during the virus replication phase, while the PCR test measures parts of the virus genome, which may be present in the body even without a replicating virus. A positive result from an antigen test indicates that the patient is in the acute phase and contagious. However, the result of a PCR test cannot determine whether the patient is contagious or at what stage of the possible infection.

“The presence of antibodies in a nasopharyngeal sample is a sign of resolving infection. The presence of antibodies combined with a negative antigen test result is therefore a particularly reliable indication that the patient is no longer contagious.”

“This is a significant technological advancement in improving respiratory tract infection testing.”

  • Janne Koskinen, CEO and Scientific Director of ArcDia –

The dual test presented at the Virology Days would make rapid testing significantly more accurate than PCR in detecting and distinguishing between acute infectious and recently recovered infections.

“The new dual test refines the assessment of the phase and infectivity of COVID-19. Identifying recent infection may have clinical significance in differential diagnosis of asthma and long COVID from other diseases.”

  • Jenna Mäkilä, Product Manager at ArcDia –



mariPOC® is an automated CE-marked test system designed for rapid identification of acute infectious diseases. It identifies the most significant pathogens causing respiratory tract, throat, and intestinal infections. Test results are available in 20 minutes (two hours at the latest). The automated mariPOC® rapid test is used in approximately 40 healthcare facilities in Finland, especially in private healthcare. Tests can be performed immediately at the sampling site, speeding up the result for clinical decision-making. The tests allow identification of up to 10 pathogens from the same sample, so the likely cause of symptoms can be found on the first sampling occasion. The clinical performance of mariPOC® tests has been demonstrated in numerous peer-reviewed studies published in prestigious scientific journals. mariPOC® is the market leader in automated rapid testing for respiratory tract infections and epidemiological surveillance in Finland. Test results are automatically and anonymously transferred to ArcDia’s mariCloudTM cloud service, which provides real-time epidemiological situation in Finland for authorities and healthcare personnel. mariPOC is known for its ease of use, high accuracy, and reliability. mariPOC® is based on patented technology developed in Finland, and the tests are manufactured in Finland.


ArcDia International Ltd

ArcDia International Ltd develops, manufactures and markets mariPOC® worldwide. The company based in Turku, Finland, started operations in 2008 and employs 30 professionals. ArcDia is the developer and manufacturer of the mariPOC® IVD platform – an automated system designed for rapid multianalyte identification of pathogens, and detection of inflammation markers and antimicrobial resistance. mariPOC® products enable central laboratory level quality, performance and pathogen coverage for primary health and emergency care units. The current mariPOC® applications cover respiratory tract infections, including COVID-19, pharyngitis and gastrointestinal infections. mariPOC COVID-19 tests have been listed in the best A category by the European Commission rapid antigen test listing. More information about ArcDia, including mariAST® developed for rapid phenotypic antibiotic resistance testing, and mariCloud™ for real-time epidemiological surveillance is available from company web page.


Further information:                      

Dr. Mr. Janne Koskinen

Head of R&D and marketing
ArcDia International Ltd

E-mail: firstname.surename[at]


Research results presented at the Virology Days 2024