Monday, August 4, 2014

Luminex Is Supporting U.S. Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases (USAMRIID) in Research Efforts to Control African Ebola Outbreak

Luminex Corporation today announced that U.S. Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases (USAMRIID) Diagnostics Division is working on rapid diagnostics for the Ebola virus using Luminex xMAP® Technology. Luminex's MAGPIX® system was recently deployed to Africa to support research efforts to control the current outbreak.

The recent Ebola outbreak has so far claimed 729 lives across Guinea, Liberia, Nigeria, and Sierra Leone according to the World Health Organization . Ebola virus disease is a severe, often fatal illness in humans characterized by the sudden onset of fever, intense weakness, muscle pain, headache and sore throat. Early diagnosis is critical for proper management of the illness and prevention of spread.

Developed by USAMRIID Diagnostics Division and run on the MAGPIX system, the assays test serum samples for the presence of viral antigens (proteins) as well as antibodies directed at these antigens. Results of the assays provide information about replication of the virus and the immune response of the host, respectively. In a study conducted in rhesus macaques, Dr. Abbe Ames and colleagues showed that some animals may be able to limit the replication of the virus, and thus have a better chance of survival.1 Understanding the pathophysiology of the Ebola virus may assist in the development of countermeasures against the disease that could save lives.

"Our open architecture instruments provide researchers a flexible tool for assay development that can advance their research goals," said Patrick J. Balthrop, president and chief executive officer of Luminex. "Understanding the functional progression of a virus is extremely valuable information. Luminex is proud to support researchers, clinicians and biosurveillance professionals and their important work in the global effort to combat infectious diseases."

About Ebola Virus Disease (EVD)

Ebola virus disease is a severe, often fatal illness in humans. Outbreaks have a case fatality rate of up to 90% and occur primarily in remote villages in Central and West Africa, near tropical rainforests. The virus is transmitted to people from wild animals and spreads in the human population through human-to-human transmission. Fruit bats of the Pteropodidae family are considered to be the natural host of the Ebola virus. Severely ill patients require intensive supportive care. No licensed specific treatment or vaccine is available for use in people or animals. 2 Because of the potential for human-to-human transmission, it is important to quickly identify infected individuals so proper precautions can be taken to limit spread of the disease.

About Luminex Corporation

Luminex is committed to applying its passion for innovation toward creating breakthrough solutions to improve health and advance science. The company is transforming global healthcare and life-science research through the development, manufacturing and marketing of proprietary instruments and assays utilizing xMAP® open-architecture multi-analyte platform, MultiCode® real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR), and multiplex PCR-based technologies, that deliver cost-effective rapid results to clinicians and researchers. Luminex's technology is commercially available worldwide and in use in leading clinical laboratories, as well as major pharmaceutical, diagnostic, biotechnology and life-science companies. Luminex is meeting the needs of customers in markets as diverse as clinical diagnostics, pharmaceutical drug discovery, biomedical research including genomic and proteomic research, personalized medicine, biodefense research and food safety.

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