-- New test will help increase access for earlyinfant HIV diagnosis
PLEASANTON, California, Feb. 18, 2014 /PRNewswire/-- Roche (SIX: RO, ROG; OTCQX: RHHBY) announced today that its dual-targetHIV-1 qualitative test, v2.0 has received CE Mark certifications, allowingit to be sold for clinical use in the European Union and those countriesaccepting CE Marked products. The test simultaneously amplifies anddetects two separate regions of the HIV-1 genome, which are not subject toselective drug pressure. This unique, dual target design allows for morereliable results to confidently and effectively diagnose HIV-1 infection.
The new dual-target HIV-1 qualitative test, v2.0works with both plasma and dried blood spot (DBS) collection cards tofacilitate PCR testing, and more importantly make sample collection andtransportation easy, even from the smallest infant in the most rural area.
The DBS collection card and the need for moresensitive and accurate information to diagnose babies early in their life andpatients across many African countries is instrumental to facilitate the stateof the art healthcare required for the region. The HIV-1 dual targetqualitative test and DBS cards eliminates need for refrigeration, drasticallyreduces the volume of blood to be stored or transported, and the stress for themother and the child is dramatically improved.
"The ability to determine the HIV status of aninfant as early as six weeks is crucial to determining the appropriate care andsupport for HIV-positive babies," stated Paul Brown, President of RocheMolecular Diagnostics. "With this new solution from Roche, we arereiterating our commitment to healthcare solutions that make a real differencefor patients."
About Early HIV Infant Diagnosis
Diagnosing HIV in infants and young children is amajor challenge. Antibody tests are ineffective in children because themother's antibodies remain in the child's system following birth. Infact, antibody tests in infants may yield false positive results for up to 15months. There are a number of alternate methods available for early diagnosisof HIV infected infants. Many approaches use molecular techniques, specificallydetecting the viral DNA and/or RNA, which enables HIV diagnosis as early as sixweeks.
Early diagnosis is critical for children infectedwith HIV. If found HIV positive, they can receive appropriate medical carebefore they develop significant illness, and can remain healthy despite theirinfection. If found HIV negative, the mother can get appropriate counseling toensure their child maintains a HIV-free status.
About the test
The COBAS? AmpliPrep/COBAS? TaqMan? HIV-1Qualitative Test, version 2.0 is an in vitro diagnostic, total nucleic acidamplification test for the qualitative detection of Human ImmunodeficiencyVirus Type 1 (HIV-1) DNA and RNA (or total nucleic acid, TNA) in human plasmaor dried blood spots using the COBAS? AmpliPrep Instrument for automatedspecimen processing and the COBAS? TaqMan? Analyzer or COBAS? TaqMan? 48Analyzer for automated amplification and detection.
The test is a diagnostic test, indicated forindividuals who are suspected to be actively infected with HIV-1. Detection ofHIV-1 TNA is indicative of active HIV infection. Infants born to mothersinfected with HIV-1 may have maternal antibodies to HIV-1, and the presence ofHIV-1 nucleic acid in the infant indicates active HIV-1 infection. In adults,the test may be used as an aid in the diagnosis of HIV-1 infection.
Accordingly to the World Health Organization (WHO),there were 35 million people living with HIV around the world in 2012. Thatsame year 2.5 million people became newly infected with HIV worldwide. For the most impacted region of Sub-Saharan Africa nearly 1 in every 20 adultsor 69% of all people living in this region are with HIV positive.
The transmission of HIV from an HIV-positive motherto her child during pregnancy, labor, delivery or breastfeeding is called verticalor mother-to-child transmission (MTCT). In the absence of any interventions HIVtransmission rates are between 15-45%.
Diagnosis, highly active antiretroviral treatment(HAART) and viral load tests, a test to determine the amount of circulatingHIV, have contributed to a steady increase in life expectancy for HIV infectedpeople of 13 years.