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OGT, Two UK Facilities to Develop Array-Based STD Dx; Prototype Planned in One Year

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) — Oxford Gene Technology, St. George’s University of London, and St. George’s Healthcare NHS plan to develop a single-platform microarray that could “diagnose multiple sexually transmitted [diseases],” OGT said today.
OGT said the test would have the capacity to diagnose many STD pathogens in a single specimen and would offer cost-effective results on the same day. It did not elaborate.
The company hopes eventually to develop the technology into accurate, point-of-care testing that would detect many STDs. But first it hopes to have a prototype after one year, at which point it plans to begin validating the array using clinical samples.
OGT said it will couple its microarray services with PCR amplification and also may use its multi sample array format in efforts to reduce the cost per sample and speed up the diagnostic process.
Tariq Sadiq, a urinary specialist and a senior lecturer at St. George’s, said STDs directly cost the UK’s National Health Service £1 billion ($1.9 billion) a year. “If successful, we think the microarray may be an important tool in the attempts to reduce the burden of STDs and their transmission,” Sadiq said.
OGT and the Heptagon Proof of Concept Fund will fund the program.

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