Behind the Scenes at a COVID-19 Diagnostic Testing Center

October 25, 2020, 1:30 pm

2:30 pm

Ever wonder how they do the test to detect the SARS-CoV-2 virus? Now you can find out!

We will take you on a virtual tour into the clinical lab that we set up in just 8 days to help UCSF with COVID-19 testing. Follow a sample from its arrival at the lab, through RNA extraction and amplification, to the end result to reveal if it is positive or negative for the virus. See how diagnostic labs are set up and use benchtop robots to perform many tests at once. Understand each step in the testing process as the scientific concepts behind them are explained and performed by one of our scientists. Learn how creative engineering solutions can help increase testing efficiency and solve problems.

Then, later in the week, join us live to meet some of the scientists that work in the lab and ask them questions!

Take the virtual tour below!

UCSF scientists Valentina Garcia, right, and Paula Serpa process COVID-19 test samples at a new UCSF diagnostic laboratory adjacent to the Chan Zuckerberg Biohub (CZ Biohub) on Friday, April 24, 2020, in San Francisco. (Photo by Noah Berger)

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Resources / Documentation / Files

The COVID Lab That Could Save America
New Weapon in the COVID War
Showcase of San Francisco’s Approach to COVID-19
How to Build a COVID Lab in 8 Days

Event Host

The Chan Zuckerberg Biohub is a nonprofit research organization setting the standard for collaborative science, where leaders in science and technology come together to drive discovery and support the bold vision to cure, prevent or manage disease in our children’s lifetime. The CZ Biohub seeks to understand the fundamental mechanisms underlying disease and to develop new technologies that will lead to actionable diagnostics and effective therapies. The CZ Biohub is a regional research endeavor with international reach, where the Bay Area’s leading institutions — the University of California, Berkeley, Stanford University and the University of California, San Francisco — join forces with the CZ Biohub’s innovative internal team to catalyze impact, benefitting people and partnerships around the world. To learn more, visit