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Seegene, Inc. to Introduce Real-Time Multiple Mutation Detection Technology for Drug Resistant Mutations in M. Tuberculosis at American Association for Clinical Chemistry 2012


7/2/2012 8:44:14 AM

GAITHERSBURG, MD and SEOUL, KOREA--(Marketwire - July 02, 2012) - Seegene Inc., (KOSDAQ: 096530), a leading developer of multiplex molecular diagnostic technologies and tests, today announced that it will introduce Quantplex™ MTB/MDR/XDR Detection, a real time test that detects Mycobacterium tuberculosis and resistance mutations associated with multiple drug resistant (MDR) and extensively drug resistant (XDR) forms of M. tuberculosis at the 2012 American Association of Clinical Chemistry (AACC) annual meeting, held in Los Angeles, from July 17-19. This new test is based on powerful enhancements to the company's TOCE™ technology, called Cleavage Site Specific Extension (TOCE-CSSE), that enables high multiplex mutation detection of disease.

The Quantplex™ MTB/MDR/XDR Detection is a first-in-class diagnostic test that will give healthcare workers a power tool in their efforts to slow the spread and eradicate tuberculosis. Quantplex™ MTB/MDR/XDR Detection can detect the presence of M. tuberculosis and determine whether any of eighteen rifampicin or seven isoniazid resistance mutations are present. Additionally, the assay will enable clinicians to determine whether seven quinolone resistance mutations or six resistance mutations to injectable drugs are present.

"We have developed a low-cost and widely applicable real-time PCR assay for rapid detection of drug resistant M. tuberculosis. This new method has been proven to be efficient and reliable in detecting a wide variety of mutations in clinical isolates," said Dr. Jong-Yoon Chun, founder, CTO and CEO of Seegene. "Cleavage Site Specific Extension is a natural extension and progression of the TOCE technology. The ability to detect and differentiate mutations -- point mutations, insertions and deletions -- is critical for the future of molecular diagnostics. The technologies that we are introducing today have the needs of tomorrow in mind. TOCE for mutation detection and differentiation will help empower molecular diagnostics to take the next steps towards personalized patient care."

Dr. Chun added, "We want to make the technology widely available to the market. We believe that TOCE has the potential to invigorate the businesses of traditional diagnostic companies, and 'wake up' a large portion of the market to new opportunities in molecular diagnostics. That is why we are initiating an aggressive licensing and OEM campaign to make this technology broadly available, as quickly as possible."

Tuberculosis (TB) is still one of the most serious threats to human health in the world today. The most serious threat concerning TB is that in certain areas of the world it is estimated by WHO that 25% or more of the patients are infected with a form of the bacterium that is resistant to two of the standard first line drugs (MDR). In addition, there has been a slow increase in the prevalence of a form of the bacterium called extensively drug resistant (XDR), where the bacterium is resistant to two of the first line drugs as well as at least two of the second line drugs. Currently the diagnosis of MDR and XDR TB is primarily based on mycobacterial culture and drug susceptibility testing in liquid or on solid media, with results available in six to eight weeks. The rapid diagnosis of drug resistance is essential to initiate effective antibiotic therapies and prevent the transmission of drug-resistant strains of the disease.

M. tuberculosis acquires drug resistance mainly through mutations in specific genes. These mutations have been well characterized and their prevalence determined in multiple studies. The extensive knowledge of drug-resistant mutations has provided the information necessary to develop molecular based assays such as Quantplex™ MTB/MDR/XDR Detection, that are capable of both identifying M. tuberculosis and the presence of key mutations that confer resistance to both first line and second line therapies.

To set up a meeting with Seegene and learn more about TOCE™ technology send an email to idealway@seegene.com.

Or visit Seegene at booth #523 at AACC in Los Angeles July 17 - 19th, 2012.

About Seegene
Seegene is the world's leading developer of multiplex molecular technologies and multiplex clinical molecular diagnostics (M-MoDx). Seegene's core enabling technologies -- ACP™, DPO™, READ, TOCE™, and TOCE™-CSSE -- are the foundation for M-MoDx tests that can simultaneously detect, differentiate and quantitate multiple targets with high sensitivity, specificity and reproducibility. Seegene's products detect multi-pathogens with great reliability and throughput, ultimately providing the most economical basis for saving time, labor and cost. Seegene's mission is to maintain leadership in molecular diagnostics for infectious diseases, genetics, pharmacogenetics, and oncology using innovative proprietary technologies.

For more information please visit www.seegene.com or call +301-762-9066.


Contacts:
Sang-Kil Lee, Ph.D.
Seegene Inc.
301-762-9066
Email Contact

or

Constantine Theodoropulos
Base Pair
617-816-4637
Email Contact


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