BEVERLY, MA and TORONTO, ON--(Marketwire - May 02, 2012) -
Hamilton Thorne Ltd. (TSX VENTURE: HTL
), a leading provider of precision laser devices and advanced image analysis systems for the fertility, stem cell and developmental biology research markets, today announced that the Company's Multi-Pulse software has received FDA clearance for performing embryo biopsy in clinical settings. The Multi-Pulse software will come standard with Hamilton Thorne's best-in-class LYKOS® clinical laser system and as an option on the legacy ZILOS-tk® system in certain markets.
The Multi-Pulse feature provides rapid, repeated firing of the laser to facilitate removal of cells from an embryo during the trophectoderm biopsy process. Trophectoderm biopsy is considered one of the best methods used to remove cells from the embryos of patients undergoing pre-implantation genetic diagnosis (PGD) to screen for genetic disease or aneuploidy. Prior to release of the Multi-pulse software, individual laser shots were required to weaken or break the junctions between the trophectoderm cells so that they can be aspirated into the biopsy micropipette. The significant advantage of Multi-Pulse is that one press of the remote footswitch initiates multiple laser pulses in rapid succession for fast and easy cell separation, thereby limiting the amount of time the embryo spends outside the incubator.
"The Multi-Pulse software gives our lasers an automated, precise tool that enables rapid trophectoderm biopsy," said Diarmaid Douglas-Hamilton, Chief Technology Officer of Hamilton Thorne Ltd. "Obtaining FDA clearance is a significant achievement for Hamilton Thorne, and with Multi-Pulse coming standard on our LYKOS™ laser system, we can offer a sophisticated laser system that is truly unique to the clinical market."
Professor Barry Behr, Co-Director, REI/IVF Program, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at the Stanford University School of Medicine, a long-time user of Hamilton Thorne lasers and a pioneer in trophectoderm biopsy, commented, "The Multi-Pulse capability, which provides the user with the ability to automatically fire the laser multiple times at relatively low power, will contribute significantly to the efficiency and safety of trophectoderm biopsy."
David Wolf, Hamilton Thorne's President and Chief Executive Officer, added, "We saw our sales of clinical lasers significantly grow in the US in 2010 and 2011, due in part to the increased adoption of trophectoderm biopsy as an accepted procedure. With the clearance of our Multi-Pulse software, we expect to see that trend continue to accelerate."
About Hamilton Thorne Ltd. (www.hamiltonthorne.com)
Hamilton Thorne designs, manufactures and distributes precision laser devices and advanced imaging systems for the fertility, stem cell and development biology research markets. It provides novel solutions for Life Science that reduce cost, increase productivity, improve results and enable research breakthroughs in regenerative medicine, stem cell research and fertility markets. Hamilton Thorne's laser products attach to standard inverted microscopes and operate as robotic micro-surgeons, enabling a wide array of scientific applications and IVF procedures. Its imaging systems improve outcomes in human IVF clinics and animal breeding facilities and provide high-end toxicology analyses.
Hamilton Thorne's growing customer base includes pharmaceutical companies, biotechnology companies, fertility clinics, university research centers, and other commercial and academic research establishments worldwide. Current customers include world-leading research labs such as Harvard, MIT, Yale, McGill, DuPont, Monsanto, Charles River Labs, Jackson Labs, Merck, Novartis, Pfizer, and Oxford and Cambridge.
Neither the Toronto Venture Exchange, nor its regulation services provider (as that term is defined in the policies of the exchange), accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release.
Certain information in this press release may contain forward-looking statements. This information is based on current expectations that are subject to significant risks and uncertainties that are difficult to predict. Actual results might differ materially from results suggested in any forward-looking statements. The Company assumes no obligation to update the forward-looking statements, or to update the reasons why actual results could differ from those reflected in the forward-looking statements unless and until required by securities laws applicable to the Company. Additional information identifying risks and uncertainties is contained in filings by the Company with the Canadian securities regulators, which filings are available at www.sedar.com.