Why is the Atomo Diagnostics (ASX:AT1) share price halted?

Atomo shares currently sit in a requested trading halt. Read on for more details.

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The Atomo Diagnostics Ltd (ASX: AT1) share price has stepped into the green today.

Atomo shares are currently in a requested trading halt, however, just prior to this announcement, were trading 1.5% higher on the day at 34 cents apiece.

Read on for more details.

Why is the Atomo Diagnostics share price halted?

Atomo advised just after lunchtime that trading of its shares is halted “pending a market update announcement (from the company) regarding its commercial arrangements with Access Bio Inc”.

The trading halt will remain in effect until 6 October, unless Atomo decides to make the announcement prior to this.

Access Bio is a manufacturer of test-tube diagnostic tests, with specialties in rapid diagnostic tests for malaria and pregnancy.

Recall that Atomo had announced agreements with Access Bio last year to commercialise its rapid antigen COVID-19 tests in the Australian and North American markets.

It has since received regulatory approval in Australia and the US, using Atomo’s Galileo platform to produce a test called CareStart EZ Covid-19 IgM/IgG.

In Q1 of this year, Atomo entered a partnership with Access for the company’s rapid diagnostic COVID-19 tests in the North American Market, with the first product to be delivered in Q3 FY21.

So far the company has sold 1.1 million testing units to Access Bio and other partners for both the European and North American markets under this arrangement.

With the demand for rapid antibody testing for COVID-19 increasing markedly in the last few months, the company is positioned on the supply side in order to match this surge.

As it stands, more than 50 countries are using Atomo’s antigen tests across a broad range of public and private sectors, according to the company.

There is yet to be any word on when Atomo will make its announcement, if or when before the 6 October.

Atomo Diagnostics share price snapshot

The Atomo Diagnostics share price has had a choppy year to date, posting a return of 11.5% since January 1.

It’s rallied 58% this past month and is up a further 17% in the last week.

Despite this, Atomo shares are 9% in the red over the past 12 months, well behind the S&P/ASX 200 index (ASX: XJO)’s climb of about 25% in this time.

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