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Magellan Biosciences, Inc. And ESA Biosciences To Host Delegation From The Beijing CDC In U.S. To Study U.S. Lead-Poisoning Prevention Programs

10/19/2005 5:09:09 PM

CHELMSFORD, Mass., Aug. 17 /PRNewswire-/ -- Magellan Biosciences, a leading provider of advanced instruments, automated systems, point-of-care products, and consumables for biomedical research and clinical diagnostics worldwide, and its subsidiary, ESA Biosciences, announced today that a high- level delegation of 11 members of the Beijing-equivalent of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) are traveling to Chelmsford, Massachusetts next week to learn about this country's public health policies and testing programs that are responsible for a significant reduction in childhood lead poisoning over the past 30 years.

Lead, a neurotoxin, remains a serious public health concern around the globe. Children are particularly vulnerable to lead poisoning, which can severely affect early brain and neurological development. Even relatively low levels of exposure can also damage bones, interfere with growth, exacerbate anemia, and affect kidney function in young children. In the U.S., lead in deteriorating paint present in older housing stock is a primary source of exposure. Outside the U.S., sources include lead-containing gasoline, emissions from smelting, mining, and other industrial operations, and coal burning. According to a study by Chinese physicians from the Shanghai Institute for Pediatric Research, coal -- one of China's primary fuel sources -- is a major source of lead poisoning in that country. In addition, some household objects and toys contain high levels of lead, and parents who work in factories can expose children to lead in the home environment from lead dust that contaminates their clothing. Early testing, identification of lead exposure, and treatment are key to minimizing and mitigating risk.

"We are honored to host this distinguished delegation of officials from both the Beijing and U.S. CDC, and are proud of our part in helping to reduce the instances of lead poisoning in children and adults worldwide," said Magellan President and Chief Executive Officer, Robert J. Rosenthal. "In fact, ESA was founded in 1968 by four MIT PhDs who set out to develop an easy, foolproof, and cost-effective way to measure blood lead levels, and it remains the only company today that offers total blood lead solutions -- from sample collection to final result. We developed these products with funding and support from the CDC, and are very pleased to further our longtime partnership through this important international forum of public health officials coming together to improve health outcomes around the globe."

The group will spend Monday afternoon, August 22nd, in tours and demonstrations of lead-analysis equipment at the ESA laboratories in Chelmsford. On Tuesday, August 23rd, they will participate in a full-day presentation by U.S. CDC representatives, who will discuss the history of lead poisoning and prevention programs in the U.S., as well as best practices in lead screening -- from specimen collection and measurement methods, to QA/QC, proficiency testing, and laboratory regulation and accreditation. U.S. presenters include Mary Jean Brown, chief, Lead Poisoning Prevention Branch; Robert Jones, chief, Inorganic Toxicology and Radionuclide Labs; Kathleen Caldwell, assistant chief, Inorganic Toxicology Laboratory; as well as Noel Stanton, director of the Wisconsin Proficiency Program. In addition, members of the Chinese delegation will present the epidemiology and treatment of lead poisoning in China.

About Magellan Biosciences

Magellan Biosciences develops advanced instruments, automated systems, point-of-care products, and consumables for biomedical research and clinical diagnostics worldwide. These tools enable scientists and clinicians to produce better, more-reliable results. And improved results help drive better outcomes -- a new understanding of health and disease, earlier, more-accurate diagnoses -- breakthrough discoveries that can lead to novel treatments, new cures -- innovations to enhance life. For more information, visit

About ESA Biosciences

Founded in 1968, ESA Biosciences, Inc. is a leading manufacturer and supplier of analytical instruments for the life science, clinical diagnostic, drug discovery, and pharmaceutical industries. The company offers a complete line of HPLC systems, components, and advanced detectors, along with a broad range of analytical services.

Magellan Biosciences

CONTACT: Caroline A. Grossman for Magellan Biosciences, +1-781-771-5579,

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