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News

Beckman Coulter signs assay research deal with National University of Ireland, Galway

Beckman Coulter Clinical Diagnostics : 23 January, 2008  (New Product)
Beckman Coulter has signed four agreements with National University of Ireland, Galway (NUI Galway) to direct assay research and acquire licenses for intellectual property that will enable development of infectious disease tests for the company's future molecular diagnostic instrument.
Under the terms of the three-to-five year agreements, research will begin in early 2008.

'With these agreements, we will take a big step toward the launch of our 'sample-to-result' molecular diagnostic system, including a differentiated menu of moderately complex tests that address urgent clinical decisions,' commented Mike Whelan, group vice president of Beckman Coulter's High Sensitivity Testing Group. 'The agreements give us access to intellectual property for the development of tests for infectious diseases including sepsis; hospital-acquired infections; and sexually transmitted diseases, such as chlamydia and neisseria.'

Infectious disease testing comprises about 50 percent of the $2 billion molecular diagnostics market in the USA.


The Assay development research relies on NUI Galway nucleic acid detection technology for both bacterial and fungal targets along with SPRI (Solid Phase Reversible Immobilization) and other technologies from Beckman Coulter.

Whelan added, 'The combination of NUI Galway technologies with ours gives us a glimpse of the next generation of molecular diagnostics. Our goal is that our simplified, automated solution will allow these time-consuming, complex, and labour-intensive tests to migrate into the routine hospital lab. So physicians will get diagnostic information within hours, instead of days or weeks, and be able to begin treating patients much sooner.'

Welcoming this new partnership with Beckman Coulter, Dr Iognaid O Muircheartaigh, NUI Galway president, praised the work of the researchers leading this initiative. 'These leading-edge researchers are addressing some of the most challenging and important issues at the frontier of modern biomedical research - with the ultimate goal of changing the way patients are diagnosed. The research and technology development collaboration with Beckman Coulter is a strong endorsement from industry of the quality and importance of the research being undertaken at NUI Galway.'

'We are excited to partner with Beckman Coulter on this unique initiative,' said Dr Daniel O'Mahony, director, Technology Transfer at NUI Galway. 'It underpins our commitment to, and support of, research excellence and exemplifies our stated research strategy: creating an environment that values intellectual property, and promoting technology transfer and commercialisation activity among university researchers and industry partners. This collaboration brings together molecular diagnostic expertise at NUI Galway with automated solution expertise at Beckman Coulter that will result in the development of break-through technologies for the diagnosis of a variety of infectious diseases in humans.'

Established in 1845 as Queen's College Galway, National University of Ireland, Galway is one of Ireland's foremost centres of academic excellence. With more than 15,000 students, it has a long-established reputation of teaching and research excellence in each of its colleges which include Science; Engineering and Informatics; Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences.
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