ABBOTT PARK, Ill., Sept. 15 /PRNewswire/ -- Abbott announced today it has been named the overall Gold winner of the 2009 Wall Street Journal Technology Innovation Awards for its Ibis T5000 Biosensor system, which is designed to detect and characterize a broad range of infectious agents in a given sample, including viruses, bacteria and fungi.
"Abbott is dedicated to pursuing innovation to find meaningful solutions that improve lives," said Stafford O'Kelly, head of Abbott's molecular diagnostics business. "This technology represents scientific innovation at its very best, and Abbott is honored to receive this important award."
Abbott's Ibis system (now marketed under the PLEX-ID trade name) was singled out for the top honor, in part, because it promises to alert health officials to new disease strains, and may also guard against bioterrorism and enable hospitals to identify antibiotic-resistant bacteria in its environment.
The Wall Street Journal reports that since the first system was completed in 2005, the technology has "been deployed in 20 sites around the U.S., including the Centers for Disease Control. This spring, the device helped the Naval Health Research Center in San Diego to identify the first two cases of the H1N1 swine flu in the U.S."
The PLEX-ID is a high-throughput technology based on a combination of molecular technologies, including polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and mass spectrometry analysis. The system is designed to address a significant unmet need by providing test results in six to seven hours instead of three or more days as required with current culturing methods.
PLEX-ID is currently intended for research use only and not for use in diagnostic procedures. It is capable of identifying virtually all bacteria, viruses and fungi, and can provide information about drug resistance, virulence and strain type of these agents. Commercial applications for the system include epidemiologic surveillance, monitoring of pandemic diseases, identification of emerging or previously unknown agents, forensic characterization of human samples, identification of sources of hospital-associated infections. Abbott is currently developing the system for human infectious disease diagnostics.
Abbott is a global, broad-based health care company devoted to the discovery, development, manufacture and marketing of pharmaceuticals and medical products, including nutritionals, devices and diagnostics. The company employs more than 72,000 people and markets its products in more than 130 countries.
Abbott's news releases and other information are available on the company's Web site at www.abbott.com.
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