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Curetis, Acumen Sign Licensing, Distribution Deals

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb) – Curetis today announced licensing and distribution deals with Singaporean contract research organization Acumen Research Laboratories. 

Under the terms of the non-exclusive licensing deal, Curetis has obtained the worldwide rights to AcuSept, a biomarker panel for sepsis. The partners will jointly develop and clinically validate the panel as a sepsis host response test on Curetis' Unyvero molecular diagnostics platform. 

AcuSept is designed to detect changes in a patient's immune system that may indicate pathogens in the blood system and a systemic inflammatory response syndrome (SIRS) caused by the pathogens. The presence of both SIRS and infections are the medical criteria for sepsis, Curetis said, and a test that can quickly and accurately differentiate patients with sepsis from those with only infections or SIRS can be crucial for appropriate treatment and survival. 

The company said that Acumen's activities in Singapore will be supported by National University of Singapore Enterprise and the Diagnostics Development Hub, a national initiative spearheaded by the Agency for Science, Technology, and Research. 

Curetis and Acumen have also reached an exclusive, multiyear distribution agreement for the Unyvero product line in countries that are part of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations. Initially, the agreement covers Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, and Indonesia. The deal includes the Unyvero system, as well as P55 and i60 ITI application cartridges, Curetis said, adding Acumen will seek product registration for those markets. Acumen will serve as the commercial hub for Curetis in the ASEAN markets.

The Unyvero P55 cartridge is for detecting non-viral pneumonia pathogens and drug-resistant bacteria, while the i60 ITI cartridge is for detecting implant and tissue infections.

Financial and other terms of the deals were not disclosed. 

The company recently inked a similar deal making Beijing Clear Biotech the exclusive distributor of Curetis' products in China, Hong Kong, and Taiwan.

Curetis CEO Oliver Schacht said in a statement that Acumen's panel "has the potential to address shortcomings of other approaches for the early detection of sepsis," and that Curetis believes a sepsis host response test on Unyvero will complement its blood culture test under development.