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New Test from Quest Diagnostics Helps Physicians Choose HIV Antiretroviral Therapy in Patients with History of Drug Resistance
Date:6/12/2009

Faster reporting aids physicians in identifying HIV mutations that can inhibit effectiveness of newest class of antiretroviral therapy

MADISON, N.J., June 12 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Quest Diagnostics Incorporated (NYSE: DGX), the world's leading provider of diagnostic testing, information and services, today announced the availability of a new laboratory developed test designed to help physicians determine whether a patient with a history of HIV drug resistance will respond to the latest class of HIV antiretroviral therapies. The HIV-1 Coreceptor Tropism Test, which reports results in approximately half the time of the nearest competing test, provides physicians with timely information so they may more quickly determine or change therapy based on how the HIV virus infects cells in the individual patient.

"Diagnostic testing is at the center of personalized medicine, providing genetic insights necessary to understand which medicines are most likely to produce a favorable health outcome for the individual patient," said Jon R. Cohen, M.D., senior vice president and chief medical officer, Quest Diagnostics. "Our new HIV tropism test will advance personalized medicine for HIV by helping physicians identify suitable patients for a particular therapy and ensure those who are not suitable do not lose precious treatment time potentially better spent on a different drug."

HIV coreceptor tropism refers to the preference of strains of HIV to bind to, activate and infect cells, promoting disease progression, based on the type of coreceptor on the cell's surface. The newest class of antiretroviral drugs, called entry inhibitors, targets the tropism process involving one or both coreceptors, CCR5 or CXCR4, of CD4 cells, which help the immune system fight infection. HIV-1 viral particles that use the CCR5 coreceptor to infect
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SOURCE Quest Diagnostics Incorporated
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