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Mar 24, 2011

Seegene and Molzyme Combine RT-PCR and Enrichment Platforms for 90-Pathogen Sepsis Test

  • Seegene has teamed up with Germany-based Molzyme to develop the automated Magicplex™ Sepsis multipathogen screening test. The South Korean-based firm claims the new Magicplex system will allow hospitals to screen for and subsequently identify over 90 major sepsis-causing pathogens and three antibiotic-resistance genes, which together represent over 90% of all sepsis-causing organisms. The system requires 1 mL of whole blood, and generates initial screening results in about three hours. The organisms screened for include 73 Gram-positive bacteria, 12 Gram-negative bacteria, and six fungi, along with the antibiotic-resistance genes mecA, vanA, and vanB.

    Due for launch within the next few weeks, the Magicplex Sepsis system combines Seegene’s READ™ real-time PCR platform with Molzym’s MolYsis enrichment technology, which the firm claims enables up to 40,000-fold greater enrichment than conventional approaches. Automated DNA isolation is carried out using Seegene’s Seeprep 12 instrument.

    The firms maintain the relative low cost and level of automation embodied in the Magicplex Sepsis platform will make it the first truly routine sepsis test worldwide. “The Magicplex Sepsis test will be the new gold standard for performing accurate, rapid, and cost-effective sepsis diagnosis," comments Jon-Yoon Chung, Ph.D., Seegene CEO. “In treating sepsis, time and accuracy are demanded. Every hour of delay in giving patients the correct antibiotics is an 8% increase in mortality rate.”

    Molecular diagnostics firm Molzyme’s MolYsis technology is a preanalytical tool used to enrich for pathogenic DNA in clinical samples. The approach effectively degrades and removes over 99% of human nontarget DNA from whole blood and other clinical samples, and isolates DNA from the target pathogen.

    Seegene is dedicated to the development of multiplexing technology for molecular diagnostic applications. The firm’s real-time READ (Real Amplicon Detection) PCR technology is distinct from both current probe-based methods such as TaqMan and Molecular Beacon, and from  primer-based approaches including Scorpion, LUX, and  Sunrise, the firm points out. It claims that in combination with the DPO™ (dual priming oligonucleotide) technology, the READ approach leads to improvements in sensitivity and specificity.

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