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LexaGene’s Prototype for Better Pathogen Detection Now Capable of Identifying E. coli and Staph

With the recent outbreaks associated with romaine lettuce (E. coli) and eggs (Salmonella) in the headlines, LexaGene Holdings Inc., a biotechnology company that develops instrumentation for pathogen detection, announced today that its prototype for more effective pathogen detection is now generating data, including the ability to identify E. coli and Staph. The technology was designed for healthcare providers and food safety officers to use at their facilities for pathogen detection and will be able to process six samples at a time – searching for over 22 pathogens – and return results in about one hour.

“Generating data with the prototype is a monumental milestone for the Company, especially given that we are at such a critical moment in society right now with new foodborne illnesses happening so frequently,” said Dr. Jack Regan, LexaGene’s CEO. “We look forward to demonstrating the prototype firsthand so that people can appreciate the impact this technology will have on the food industry. Over the next several months, we will continue to optimize the performance of the instrument and equip it with reagents to detect more diseases such as Salmonella and Listeria. Once we finalize our pathogen-detection panel, we’ll begin processing samples to demonstrate our advantages over standard testing procedures.”

Not only does LexaGene aim to provide better technology to reduce the chances of shipping contaminated food items, but it anticipates applying this same technology to help doctors diagnose sick patients. Traditionally, healthcare providers collect a sample from a patient and ship it to an offsite laboratory for testing, which takes between two and five days to return a result. In the meantime, the provider often prescribes a treatment without knowing the true cause of the infection, or whether it is resistant to a therapeutic. By contrast, LexaGene’s technology will identify the presence of antibiotic-resistance bacteria, which will empower healthcare providers to treat their patients with more targeted therapies while they are still in the facility.

“The current system for detecting dangerous pathogens is clearly broken,” added Dr. Regan. “We need an easier and less expensive solution to find deadly bacteria like E. coli and Salmonella, whether it is in the food plant or a sick person. LexaGene’s technology will soon be the world’s first easy-to-use, open-access, on-site rapid pathogen detection system that has the potential to change how we prevent and diagnose disease.”

About LexaGene Holdings Inc.

LexaGene is a biotechnology company developing the very first easy-to-use fully automated pathogen detection platform that is open-access, the LX6. The open-access feature will empower end-users to target any pathogen of interest, as they can load their own real-time PCR assays onto the instrument for customized pathogen detection.  End-users simply need to collect a sample, load it onto the instrument with a sample preparation cartridge, and press ‘go’. The instrument is expected to offer excellent sensitivity, specificity, and breadth of pathogen detection. The instrument will be able to process six samples at a time, in an on-demand fashion, returning results in about 1 hour. The company expects to sell its technology in the food safety, veterinary diagnostics, water quality monitoring, and aquaculture pathogen surveillance markets.

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