Oxford Nanopore has secured £48.4m of additional funding, taking its total primary investment to around £530m.

The firm, spun out of Professor Hagan Bayley’s University of Oxford lab, has developed a real-time DNA/RNA sequencer and can assist with accurate, rapid testing in cancer and infectious disease.

The latest funding, which follows a round earlier this year, comes from new and existing shareholders in EMEA, US and Asia and will ‘support ongoing innovation and rapid growth’.

Oxford Nanopore's sequencing devices are being used in scientific research worldwide, and increasingly in regulated environments such as healthcare and food safety.

The technology is being used extensively for epidemiology and research purposes in the current COVID-19 pandemic.

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The company also announced last week that it has a new category of COVID-19 test, LamPORE, in advanced development.

"This year we have gained extensive experience supporting customers using our sequencing technology for COVID-19 epidemiology, and we have also been directing our own powerful innovation and development engine at COVID-19,” said Dr Gordon Sanghera, CEO of Oxford Nanopore.

“We designed our first nanopore sequencing device to be used by any scientist, anywhere. Now, with LamPORE, we want to bring the accessibility and scalability of nanopore sequencing into the area of rapid testing.”