BD, Lab21 team on Aspergillus assay

Becton, Dickinson's ($BDX) BD Diagnostics unit and the U.K.'s Lab21 are developing an assay to detect the Aspergillus fungus using the new fully automated BD MAX molecular testing system.

Infection caused by Aspergillus is particularly life-threatening in immunocompromised patients, with an estimated 10 million people at risk each year. Studies have shown that antifungal treatment within the first 10 days of infection reduces mortality from 90% to 40%.

"This agreement with Lab21 is designed to add an innovative molecular test to the BD MAX system's growing test menu that will empower clinicians and laboratory professionals with rapid, accurate information on which to base important treatment decisions," said Tom Polen, president, BD Diagnostics--Diagnostic Systems. "By collaborating with best-in-class in vitro diagnostics developers such as Lab21, our goal is to make the BD MAX System an indispensible tool in clinical laboratories by providing them with an ever-expanding test menu on a fully automated platform."

He adds BD plans to bring new assays to the BD MAX System in a range of disease categories. There are now more than 14 assays in the BD MAX system's menu pipeline, according to a statement.

According to its website, Lab21 is growing rapidly and provides state-of-the-art molecular diagnostic products and services in personalized medicine to healthcare organizations, clinical laboratories and pharmaceutical companies.

- see the BD Diagnostics/Lab 21 statement