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Made-in-Singapore H5N1 diagnostic kit -- detects all known strains of H5N1 virus with a single test
Date:5/29/2012

ins of the H5N1 Avian Influenza A virus in a single test within a matter of hours.

Co-developed by Dr Masafumi Inoue, a Senior Research Scientist and Project Director of Technology Development from ETC and Dr Timothy Barkham, a senior consultant of Laboratory Medicine from TTSH, this newly launched H5N1 test kit has been clinically validated by several hospitals in Southeast Asia.

"We are excited to be able to contribute to the fight against H5N1 virus with our expertise and know-how. Our technology has greatly simplified and accelerated the process of detection and identification of new H5N1 variants. Such information is especially critical when the virus mutates to become more dangerous, such as in drug resistance." said Dr Inoue. (Watch video release on interview with Dr Inoue at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OY_DDU2RwEY)

To enhance its usability, this new H5N1 test kit is also purposefully designed to be compatible with the previously launched "4-plex" Influenza diagnostic kit [5]. The latter is already adopted for use by several regional hospitals in Thailand. Using such multiplex assays enables simultaneous detection and differentiation of the different types of influenza infection [6] in a single test, which will save hospital labs and clinicians significant time and cost.

"While there have not been any reported H5N1 cases in Singapore, this mutating subtype of influenza virus type A continues to be a concern. The ability to detect and characterise influenza strains remains important in the management of the disease. With this latest H5N1 assay, we can easily combine it with our previous 4-plex Influenza kit to differentiate which strain of Influenza is present with one test, giving a definite diagnosis and faster turnaround for our patients and our colleagues in infection control and public health," said Dr Barkham.

Local Small and Medi
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Contact: Dr. Sarah Chang
chang_kai_chen@a-star.edu.sg
65-682-66442
Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR), Singapore
Source:Eurekalert

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