Updated from 10:48 a.m. EDT.
NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Shares of OraSure Technologies (OSUR) - Get Report were surging 10.64% to $7.74 on heavy trading volume late Wednesday afternoon after the company was awarded a $16.6 million contract to hurry the development of its oral test kit for the Zika virus, the Wall Street Journal reports.
The Bethlehem, PA-based company also manufactures oral tests for HIV and Ebola.
Its newest contract for Zika with a biomedical research agency in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services will run for six years.
The initial commitment is valued at $7 million with options of up to $9.6 billion to finance further product enhancements and clinical and regulatory services, the Journal reports.
OraSure claims that its Zika tests get results faster than typical tissue or blood samples because it only requires an oral swab.
As of August 11, there were 529 U.S. cases of pregnant women possibly infected with the virus, according to the U.S. Center for Disease Control and Prevention.
Over 5.94 million shares of the stock have traded so far today, vs. its 30-day daily average of about 508,000 shares.
(OraSure is held in David Peltier's Stocks Under $10 portfolio. See all of his holdings with a free trial.)
Separately, TheStreet Ratings objectively rated this stock according to its "risk-adjusted" total return prospect over a 12-month investment horizon. Not based on the news in any given day, the rating may differ from Jim Cramer's view or that of this articles's author.
TheStreet Ratings rated this stock as a "hold" with a ratings score of C+.
The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures and solid stock price performance. However, as a counter to these strengths, we find that the growth in the company's net income has been quite unimpressive.
You can view the full analysis from the report here: OSUR