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Cepheid Announces New Diagnostic Technology to Aid World Efforts in Halting the Spread of Mycobacterium Tuberculosis (TB)
Date:3/24/2009

ection, resulting in one third of the 33 million HIV sufferers worldwide infected with TB. Left untreated, 90 percent of these people will die within months of first contracting the disease, reinforcing the urgent need for an accurate and rapid test.

"The need for accurate and rapid detection of tuberculosis is becoming increasingly acute with the development of drug resistant strains and the growing at-risk populations in the developing world," said John Bishop, Cepheid's Chief Executive Officer. "The GeneXpert System has a unique level of technical capability never before seen in molecular diagnostics and this capability is on full display with the Xpert MTB/RIF test. Clinicians will now be able to obtain dependable test results for not only detection of TB but simultaneous determination of whether or not it is a drug resistant strain in virtually any clinical setting. Appropriate therapeutic management has been a significant factor in the development of drug resistant strains of tuberculosis and the availability of the Xpert MTB/RIF test should be a breakthrough technological leap forward in helping to ensure proper therapeutic management and in helping to halt transmission. We are expecting to make this test available as a CE IVD Mark product next month."

Xpert MTB/RIF not only detects the presence of TB, but also identifies whether it is resistant to Rifampicin, a common first-line drug for treatment of the disease and a reliable surrogate marker of strains that are multidrug-resistant (MDR-TB). The test is expected to enable physicians to dramatically improve patient outcomes -- possible only with on-demand, actionable results to guide therapy decisions within the timeframe of an initial patient visit.

"Multidrug-resistant TB is becoming increasingly prevalent throughout the world, making TB harder to treat with the usual treatment regimen that includes Rifampicin," said David H. Persing, M.D., Ph.D., Cephei
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