Partnership aims to develop test for early diagnosis and treatment decision making.

Pfizer’s Germany-based pharma unit is teaming up with fellow German firm SIRS-Lab to develop molecular diagnostic tests for the early diagnosis of sepsis and to aid clinicians in deciding on the optimum therapy. The initial focus will be on severe fungal bloodstream infections. As part of the collaboration the firms will investigate the impact of molecular assay-based diagnosis on the clinical outcome of patients with sepsis.

Founded in 2000 as a spin-out from the from the University Hospital in Jena, Germany, SIRS-Lab is dedicated to the development of molecular tests to help in the early identification of sepsis, determine the causative infection, and monitor the immune response of patients during therapy.

The firm’s flagship CE-marked sepsis test, VYOO, is is designed to detect 99% of all sepsis-relevant pathogens including 33 bacteria and 6 fungi and, in addition, to detect presence of the antibiotic resistance genes vVanA, vanB, blaSHV, and mecA.

The test kit contains all the required reagents, consumables, and step-by-step instructions, provides results within a day, and can detect noncultivable pathogens, SIRS-Lab notes .VYOO utilizes the firm’s commercially available Looxter sample-preparation product, which has been developed to concentrate the DNA of pathogens from complex samples such as whole blood.

SIRS-Lab has in parallel established a biobank for use in the identification and evaluation of sepsis biomarkers that can be applied to monitoring the progress of patients during early infection and over the course of subsequent treatment. A transcriptome biomarker test, Siqnature, is currently under development, and potential partners for Siqnature are being sought.

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