Diagnostics Deals

JetBlue Partners with Vault Health to Offer Travelers At-Home COVID-19 Testing

COVID-19 has greatly complicated air travel from country to country and even state to state. While entrance rules vary from place to place, a number of jurisdictions are allowing travelers to avoid quarantine and self-isolation if they can prove they tested negative for the virus. As a result, some airlines have teamed with lab companies to offer customers with travel plans the chance to be tested before their flights. And now one airline has taken the model to the next level by providing, at-home saliva-based testing.

The JetBlue Collaboration with Vault Health

On Sept. 30, JetBlue announced that it has teamed with Vault Health, a men’s healthcare technology platform offering in-home and personalized treatments, to provide COVID-19 testing for travelers. While it’s hardly the first such deal, the partnership is something of a game changer to the extent that the Vault Health test is a RT-PCR test run by the Rutgers Clinical Genomics Laboratory at RUCDR Infinite Biologics using technology that has received Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) from the FDA for use on saliva samples collected at home.

The way it works: Customers go to Vault Health’s dedicated landing page and enter their JetBlue confirmation code to start the process and also receive a discount on the test. After receiving test materials by overnight mail, they collect their own saliva samples from home while a Vault Health supervisor looks on by Zoom video to ensure everything is done properly. The sample is then sent overnight to a lab, with results provided in 72 hours or less. There are no swabs or need for in-person interaction. The test, a modified version of a Thermo Fisher Scientific assay that received EUA in April, is highly accurate and capable of detecting fewer than 10 copies of SARS-CoV-2 genes per milliliter of saliva, according to Vault Health.

“We are so happy to be able to provide JetBlue customers peace of mind during their travels,” said Vault Health founder and CEO Jason Feldman in a statement. “This saliva test is one of the most reliable and accurate COVID tests available in the country with fast turnaround time to results.”

Other Airline-Lab COVID-19 Testing Arrangements

Other airlines offering COVID-19 testing to travellers seeking to avoid quarantine and self-isolation include:

United Airlines was the first to offer testing. But while the airline plans to expand the program to other airports, testing is currently limited to customers traveling form San Francisco International Airport to Hawaii. There are two test options:

  • A $250 rapid Abbott ID NOW COVID-19 test performed by GoHealth Urgent Care at San Francisco International Airport on the day of travel; or
  • An $80 mail-in test administered by Color that travelers must complete 72 hours before travel.

American Airlines has partnered with CareNow. The test options:

  • A $150 in-person testing at designated CareNow urgent care locations, which are open every day and after-hours; or
  • A $249 on-site rapid testing on the day of the flight administered by CareNow at DFW (Dallas Fort Worth) International Airport with results expected in 15 minutes on average.

American has also entered a partnership with a second provider, LetsGetChecked, which allow passengers to order tests before flying from five locations, three of which are in Hawaii (cost: $129) and two in Costa Rica (cost $109).

Hawaiian Airlines has tabbed Worksite Labs to offer testing at labs near Los Angeles and San Francisco International airports, with more locations to come. Cost: $150 for day-of travel express service and $90 for results within 36 hours.

Alaska Airlines has partnered with Carbon Health to offer passengers in Seattle who are traveling to Hawaii testing at a downtown pop-up clinic that promises test results within two hours at the cost of $135.


Partner 1 Partner(s) 2+ Deal Summary
Invitae Pacific Biosciences
  • Objective: Use long-read next-generation sequencing to develop diagnostic testing for epilepsy
  • Dynamic: Use single-molecule, whole-genome sequencing using PacBio’s HiFi reads to large cohort of pediatric patients with epilepsy to develop comprehensive variant profiles for use in investigating genetic etiology of epilepsy
Microsoft Pacific Biosciences + Children’s Mercy Kansas City
  • Objective: Improve diagnostic yield for rare disease sequencing
  • Dynamic: Children’s Mercy to apply PacBio HiFi reads to difficult cases of rare pediatric disease
  • Microsoft to help build Azure cloud-based analysis solutions and data repository
Agilent Technologies InterVenn
  • Objective: Investigate glycoproteomic biomarkers for diseases common in Southeast Asia, such as cancer
  • Dynamic: Work to be done at Malaysian lab of InterVenn, firm created by California researchers to commercialize glycoproteomic analysis methods for ovarian, colorectal and other cancers
Summit Biolabs Colorado Center for Personalized Medicine (CCPM)
  • Objective: Develop saliva-based liquid biopsy tests for head and neck cancer, COVID-19, and other viral diseases
  • Dynamic: Summit Biolabs to integrate CCPM’s research biobank with personalized genomic information to create the assays
Inspirata Carebox Healthcare Solutions
  • Objective: Launch new product providing hospitals and oncologists information on matching their cancer patients with clinical trials
  • Dynamic: Inspirata to use its informatics technologies to extract data from pathology reports and electronic health records to create patient-specific clinical and genomic data profiles that will be combined with Carebox’s system for matching eligibility criteria from clinical trial databases with patients’ health and genomic data to identify potentially relevant studies for them
PierianDx Pillar Biosciences
  • Objective: Create product to generate an “out-of-the-box” clinical genomic report specific to each assay
  • Dynamic: PierianDx to integrate Pillar Biosciences PiVAT cancer bioinformatics pipeline into its core technology platform
  • Pillar to market PieranDx clinical genomic reports along with its own cancer profiling assays
Twist Bioscience Neogene Therapeutics
  • Objective: Develop personalized chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T cell therapies and T cell receptor (TCR) therapies for cancer patients
  • Dynamic: Broad strategic partnership in which Twist Biopharma to create a specialized TCR library for Neogene with goal of discovering engineered TCRs against two specified T cell targets for future Neogene personalized T cell therapies
Exact Sciences Pfizer
  • Objective: Promote Exact’s Cologuard colorectal cancer screening test
  • Dynamic: Extension of current agreement for Pfizer to continue to provide marketing and related support for Cologuard and help Exact educate patients, physicians and health systems about the product
  • Pfizer to also provide sales and marketing support through end of 2022 and health system support through end of 2021
  • Exact to compensate Pfizer based on amount of services provided, along with additional fixed and performance-related fees
CIC Health Ariadne Labs
  • Objective: Expand and streamline access to SARS-CoV-2 testing in US
  • Dynamic: Assurance Testing Alliance (ATA) to handle logistics and operations required to connect labs with schools, elder care settings, employers, and other groups needing regular SARS-CoV-2 testing
  • ATA to also offer technology platform organizations can use to offer testing to their employees
IsoPlexis Yale University
  • Objective: Develop assays for COVID-19
  • Dynamic: Use IsoPlexis’ IsoLight system to identify markers of patient immune response to the virus for use in developing therapies and vaccines for COVID
Oncocyte Fondazione Michelangelo (Milan, Italy)
  • Objective: Evaluate Oncocyte’s DetermaIO test as a therapy response predictor in NeoTRIPaPDL1 trial
  • Dynamic: DetermaIO is a tissue-based gene expression assay that evaluates signals associated with the tumor immune microenvironment and stratifies patients by likelihood of responding to immunotherapy
JetBlue Airways Vault Health
  • Objective: Provide COVID testing to passengers planning to travel who must prove they tested negative for the virus to avoid quarantine and get into the country or state
  • Dynamic: Customers to administer at-home saliva test via an online video through Vault while a supervisor ensures the sample is properly taken
  • Sample then sent overnight to a lab, with results provided in 72 hours or less
Sema4 Janssen
  • Objective: Identify patients for enrollment in Janssen oncology clinical trials
  • Dynamic: Sema4 to give Janssen access to its genomics testing capabilities and Centrellis health intelligence platform
Genosity Olink Proteomics
  • Objective: Strategic services and collaboration agreement for US
  • Dynamic: Genosity to offer Sweden-based Olink’s proximity extension assay technology at its CLIA lab and include it in its Genosity Integrated Genomics Toolkit software
  • Enables Genosity to ramp up its product offerings and Olink to expand into US market for protein biomarker discovery services
LabCorp Genfit
  • Objective: Commercialize Genfit’s NIS4 technology for patients with non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH)
  • Dynamic: Exclusive 5 year licensing agreement giving LabCorp access to the NIS4 technology


Product Owner Distributor Deal Summary
Mawi DNA Technologies Nucleus Biotech
  • Products: Mawi DNA’s iSWAB biosampling products
  • Territory: Germany, Austria, Switzerland
Proteomics International Laboratories Medical Horizons SRL
  • Products: Proteomics’ ELISA-based Promarker D (IA) diabetic kidney disease immunoassay
  • Territory: Italy
  • Exclusive
Toda Pharma Genomic Vision
  • Products: Toda’s Toda Coronadiag+ and Coronadiag Ag, both of which are rapid diagnostic tests for SARS-CoV-2
  • Territory: Undisclosed
RevoluGen Welgene Biotech
  • Products: RevoluGen’s Fire Monkey/Fire Flower High Molecular Weight DNA (HMW-DNA) extraction and purification product
  • Territory: Taiwan
  • Non-exclusive
Agendia PathoNext
  • Products: Agendia’s MammaPrint BluePrint Breast Cancer Recurrence and Molecular Subtyping tests
  • Territory: Germany
CellSafe Dynasty Castle Investments
  • Products: CellSafe’s LAMPlex RT-qLAMP COVID-19 Detection Assay
  • Territory: Portugal and 6 unspecified African countries
BillionToOne Swift Biosciences
  • Product: BillionToOne’s qSanger-COVID-19 assay test kit
  • Territory: Undisclosed
  • Exclusive


Licensor Licensee Deal Summary
Quanterix Abbott Laboratories Abbott gets non-exclusive license to use Quanterix’s bead-based technology patents for diagnostics applications for $10 million upfront + royalties + milestone payments
Harvard’s Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering Agile Biodetection Non-exclusive, royalty-free licensing agreement enabling Agile to use Wyss’ nasopharyngeal swab and toehold switch technologies to SARS-CoV-2 diagnostics
Chronix Biomedical Oncocyte Oncocyte licenses Chronix’s blood-based copy number instability testing technology and will use its laboratory network in Germany to accelerate EU market launch of Oncocyte’s DetermaRx


Supplier/Servicer Client/User Deal Summary
LabCorp Infirmary Health LabCorp to provide lab management, phlebotomy, logistics services and reference testing to Alabama-based health network

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