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Spartan, Cooperative DX Start HIV Assay Collaboration

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – Spartan Bioscience said today that it will work with Cooperative Diagnostics to validate the use of an HIV assay on its analyzer as part of an effort to develop an HIV test for developing countries.

The companies will conduct validation testing of Cooperative Diagnostics' HIV PCR assay on Spartan's DX-12 DNA analyzer. Cooperative Diagnostics' Simplex HIV-1 RNA kit is part of a blood screening kit made and distributed by Cooperative Diagnostics International in Guatemala.

The goal of the collaboration is to validate an HIV-1 test for infant diagnosis and viral load testing that can be priced at less than $10 and used in poor regions.

"Too often, cost issues prevent the developing world from receiving life-saving medical technologies," Paul Lem, CEO of Ottawa, Canada-based Spartan Bioscience, said in a statement. The technology developed under this collaboration, Lem said, has "the potential to bring highly-accurate DNA-based HIV/AIDS testing to countries and regions who have been severely under-served and often forgotten."

Cooperative Diagnostics is based in Greenwood, South Carolina, and has a manufacturing and distribution facility in Guatemala City, Guatemala.

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