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Akonni Licenses Biological Threat Materials from USAMRIID to Develop Tests

By a GenomeWeb staff reporter

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – Akonni Biosystems today announced a licensing agreement with the US Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases, which will provide the molecular diagnostics firm access to nucleic acid sequences, primers, and probes for important biological threat agents.

Akonni, based in Frederick, Md., plans to use the content to develop products to expand its market presence beyond detection of infectious diseases and into fields such as global biosecurity. New products will be developed on Akonni's TruArray platform and will incorporate its TruTip kits for extraction of DNA and RNA. Its Tru Dx platform for optical detection will also be used.

The products are targeted for launch in 2012 and will be field-deployable by mobile laboratory or field trailer. Multiple organisms will be able to be tested simultaneously in both clinical and environmental sample matrices, the company said.

Financial and other terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Akonni said that it also plans to port the USAMRIID content to its TruSentry platform, which leverages Tecan's Freedom EVO 200 liquid handling system.

"Our engineering, manufacturing and quality systems expertise coupled with USAMRIID's expertise in biological assay development creates a very powerful combination for delivering a new generation of rapid, low-cost biosecurity products to the marketplace," Akonni CEO Charles Daitch said in a statement.

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