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bioMerieux Launches Industry-First Vancomycin-Resistant Enterococci (VRE) Screening Tool

DURHAM, N.C., March 11 /PRNewswire/ -- bioMerieux – a world leader in the field of in vitro diagnostics – today announced the launch of the first Food and Drug Administration (FDA) cleared chromID™ VRE, a simple and cost-effective solution in the struggle against vancomycin-resistant enterococci (VRE). chromID VRE is the first to receive an FDA 510(k) clearance for the qualitative detection of Enterococcus faecium and Enterococcus faecalis showing acquired resistance to vancomycin in stool specimens. The product can be used as an aid to identify, prevent, and control VRE colonization in healthcare settings. Infections with these drug resistant organisms produce severe adverse events in patients.(

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), VRE is spread from patient to patient via caregivers. A study published in Clinical Infectious Diseases in Oct. 2009 examined the hospital and societal costs of antimicrobial-resistant infections (ARIs) in a Chicago teaching hospital. According to the study, 31 percent of patients with antibiotic-resistant infections in the study had an infection due to VRE and 40 percent of these infections were healthcare associated.(1) In a publication by Carmeli et al., infections with these pathogens were reported to have significant impact on patient morbidity, mortality, length of stay, and total hospital costs:

  • Case fatality rate of 11% higher than normal patients
  • 6.6 days greater length of stay
  • $20,534 in additional hospital costs(2)

"We pioneered this chromogenic media for systematic and cost-efficient screening to control the spread of VRE infections, significant from both a medical and economic perspective," said Thierry Bernard, corporate vice president, Commercial Operations for bioMerieux. "As part of a comprehensive infection prevention program, chromID VRE can help institutions identify the reservoir and control the spread of these pathogenic organisms."  

chromID VRE is the latest screening tool added to the bioMerieux arsenal in the fight against healthcare-associated infections (HAIs). chromID VRE along with chromID™ MRSA, FDA cleared and introduced last fall, provide simple and cost-effective solutions in the fight against these bacterial pathogens. The presence of vancomycin-resistant enterococci on chromID VRE is visually identified by the presence of blue-to-green colonies with E. faecalis and violet-colored colonies with E. faecium after a 24- to 48-hour incubation period.

As a leader in microbiology, bioMerieux's objective is to provide customers with the most advanced and complete solution set to effectively manage infectious diseases such as VRE, spanning both manual and automated techniques. bioMerieux provides a more comprehensive approach to containing VRE and HAIs in general, by offering an integrated solution for HAIs which meets the needs of healthcare professionals in the three key areas of infection control:

  • Prevention: Patient screening and environmental monitoring
  • Surveillance: Information management (alerts, epidemiology studies, antibiotic monitoring)
  • Intervention: Diagnosis of HAI and outbreak management

Identifying resistance and helping clinicians get clear actionable information so they can begin effective antibiotic therapy as early as possible is an integral part of bioMerieux's S.M.A.R.T. Campaign ( The Solutions to Manage the Antimicrobial Resistance Threat (S.M.A.R.T.) initiative promises to create more educational resources for the lab and to provide healthcare professionals with relevant tools to identify, monitor, prevent, and track resistance.


1. Roberts R. et al. Hospital and Societal Costs of Antimicrobial-Resistant Infections in a Chicago Teaching Hospital: Implications for Antibiotic Stewardship. Clinical Infectious Disease 2009;49:1175-84.

2. Carmeli Y, et al. Health and Economic Outcomes of Vancomycin-Resistant Enterococci. Arch Intern Med. 2002 ;162:2223-2228.

About bioMerieux

Advancing Diagnostics to Improve Public Health

A world leader in the field of in vitro diagnostics for over 45 years, bioMerieux is present in more than 150 countries through 39 subsidiaries and a large network of distributors. In 2009, revenues reached euro 1.223 billion with 85 percent of sales outside of France.

bioMerieux provides diagnostic solutions (reagents, instruments, software) which determine the source of disease and contamination to improve patient health and ensure consumer safety. Its products are used for diagnosing infectious diseases and providing high medical value results for cancer screening and monitoring and cardiovascular emergencies. They are also used for detecting microorganisms in agri-food, pharmaceutical, and cosmetic products.

bioMerieux is listed on the NYSE Euronext Paris market (Symbol: BIM – ISIN: FR0010096479). Other information can be found at

SOURCE bioMerieux

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