About Us

COVID-19 Test Laboratory

The BioSmartTM Lighthouse Lab is brought to you by BiotechAfrica.

The BioSmart Lighthouse Lab is named as such because it amplifies target genes via PCR which use fluorescent dyes to detect SARS-CoV-2.  


There are other "Lighthouse Labs" performing mass Covid-19 testing.  For example in the UK - Lighthouse Labs are in operation for "pillar two" mass-testing by the National Health Service (NHS)

As of August 2020, five sites in the UK are in operation:

Platform Capacity & Workflow

16 x 384 well plates can be processed every 90 minutes = 50 000 tests per 8 hour shift. Increased capacity of 200 000 tests per day is possible by using 1534 well plates

  •  SAHPRA approved tests

  • ISO13485:2016 Certified

  • Operating under ISO15189

  • Registered Clinical Pathologist

  • Dr Ramokone Maphoto MBCHB, FC Path Viro (SA) 

  • HPCSA registration number: MLS0001040   


  • Our test is 50% cheaper than current tests.

  • 2-in-1: Our test diagnoses acute infection (RT-PCR), and past exposure to SARS-CoV-2 (ELISA antibody screening)


  • Our test can be performed using saliva, oropharyngeal (OP), or nasopharyngeal (NP) swab samples.

  • The collection of saliva samples is non-invasive and can be taken without the need of a nurse.

  • Saliva samples have been shown to be more sensitive than OP or NP sample types.

  • Saliva samples are also screened for the presence of antibodies.  


  • Asymptomatic carriers (40% of infections) can be affordably tested.

  • In partnership with pharmacies, the population will be able to purchase collection devices.

  • Sample drop off collection points will be set-up in designated stores.


  • Our test results will be available 24-48 hours after receipt of sample

  • Which means more control and less risk of positive cases infecting others

  • We can test groups, families or even whole factories and companies at once

History & Vision

Biotech Africa was founded by Mr Paul Anley and Dr Jenny Leslie in 2014. Paul previously founded Pharma Dynamics, a leading generics pharmaceutical company in South Africa and exited the business in 2016.


Jenny holds a PhD in Virology from the University of Glasgow and has many years of experience in the development and commercialisation of recombinant proteins used for antibody detection and the diagnosis of infectious diseases. 


Biotech Africa was established with a vision to help the fight against HIV via the manufacture of recombinant proteins used in HIV rapid tests. Their products are exported around the world to manufacturers of HIV rapid tests, one of which is reimported back into South Africa by the DoH.

In response to the current pandemic, they have developed recombinant proteins for Covid-19 serology screening: SARS-CoV-2 Nucleocapsid protein and Spike (Receptor Binding Domain) glycoprotein.


These are currently being exported for the manufacture of Covid-19 antibody screening tests in S. Korea, China and Europe and are being used for the development of COVID-19 serology tests by South African manufacturers.



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