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IDRI and Chembio to Develop Tests for Leishmaniasis and Leprosy

The Seattle-based Infectious Disease Research Institute (IDRI) and Chembio Diagnostics, Inc. (OTC Bulletin Board: CEMI) have entered into two research and development agreements for the development of rapid diagnostic tests for Leishmaniasis and Leprosy, two 'neglected diseases' targeted by IDRI. The tests will be developed by Chembio using Chembio's patented Dual Path immunoassay test platform (DPP(TM)) and will incorporate IDRI's proprietary antigens.

In preliminary studies conducted during the first quarter of 2007, Chembio demonstrated superior analytical sensitivity on certain well-characterized samples from patients with these diseases. These studies resulted in the decision by Chembio and IDRI to enter into two Cooperative Research and Development Agreements to further their joint efforts.

IDRI, which has funding from the National Institutes of Heath and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation for the development of vaccines and diagnostics for leishmaniasis, and from the American Leprosy Mission for similar activities in leprosy, actively partners with industrial organizations to achieve its goals of developing products to aid in the control of selected diseases.

Following completion of the prototype tests this year, the parties intend to then seek commitments for procurement of these products for affected populations globally. The leishmania parasite affects millions of people worldwide, while leprosy continues to be an important public health problem, with approximately one million new cases per year. Access to better diagnostic tools will be essential for control of theses diseases.

About Leishmaniasis

Leishmaniasis is a widespread parasitic disease with frequent epidemics in the Indian subcontinent, Africa, and Latin America and is a World Health Organization priority for vaccine development. A complex of different diseases, Leishmania parasites cause fatal infections of internal
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