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FIND and Carl Zeiss work together to develop microscope to improve diagnosis of TB

Carl Zeiss MicroImaging : 01 May, 2008  (New Product)
In collaboration with the Foundation for Innovative New Diagnostics (FIND), Carl Zeiss has developed a special microscope to improve the diagnosis of tuberculosis.
Compared to the traditional technique of diagnosing tuberculosis by Ziehl-Neelsen staining, diagnosis with the Primo Star iLED fluorescence Microscope is four times faster with a ten percent improvement in sensitivity. T

he market launch of the new fluorescence Microscope is scheduled for October. The key feature of the new Microscope is its energy-saving LED illumination which is specially designed for use in the countries concerned. FIND and Carl Zeiss will sell the Primo Star iLED at a reduced price to 24 developing countries defined by the WTO World Trade Organization.

The Swiss FIND Foundation seeks to promote and protect the health of the population in developing countries. This non-profit organization combats the spread of dangerous infectious diseases by sponsoring diagnostic products and financing their development around the globe. Infectious diseases include tuberculosis (TB), which is mainly transmitted by droplet infection, typically through coughing.

Today, tuberculosis tops the statistics of fatal infectious diseases along with HIV/Aids and malaria. In view of the development of multiresistant strains and co-infection with HIV/Aids, the WHO (World Health Organization) estimates that tuberculosis will cause 30 million deaths in the next ten years.

Already one in three persons is infected with the tuberculosis pathogen. “Our specific solution for the diagnosis of tuberculosis is part of our overall strategy to provide the global markets with LED-based fluorescence systems both for research and routine applications. Of course, we are proud to be able to contribute to the global fight against tuberculosis,' said Dr Bernhard Ohnesorge, vice president and general manager of the BioSciences division at Carl Zeiss.

Robert Koch presented his discovery of the TB bacillus made possible with microscopes from Carl Zeiss in 1882. Only after the discovery of mycobacterium tuberculosis by Robert Koch, who studied in Goettingen, Germany, was it possible to treat this fatal disease, which caused one in seven deaths in Europe and America at that time.
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