Immunexpress Secures U.S. Patent for Immune Biomarkers for Herpes Virus Infection
SEATTLE, United States (November 21, 2012) – Today, Immunexpress Group announced the granting in the United States (U.S.) of one of its core biomarker patents, “microarray-mediated diagnosis of herpes virus infection by monitoring host’s differential gene expression upon treatment.” The patent covers host response molecules and assays for the diagnosis of herpes virus infection as well as the detection of specific immune responses to an infection or the re-activation of the herpes virus, which can occur in sepsis patients and may contribute to increases in sepsis severity.
Published scientific literature now supports the notion that reactivation of latent viruses such as cytomegalovirus (CMV) and other herpes viruses in critically ill patients can increase severity of sepsis, lengthen the stay of patients in Intensive Care Units (ICU) and hospital, as well as increase patient mortality rates. As part of its research strategy, Immunexpress is exploring novel biomarker panels of the patient’s immune response to identify the reactivation of viruses, such as herpes, in the absence of clinical signs; this early detection may enable better treatment and management decisions for sepsis patients and immuno-compromised patients at risk of sepsis.
“Securing this U.S. patent is a critical step in realizing Immunexpress’s commitment to improving sepsis patient outcomes worldwide through readily available clinical diagnostics that physicians can easily use,” said Dr. Roslyn Brandon, President and Chief Executive Officer, Immunexpress. “It is our expectation that the results of our unique research and approach will one day save lives, improve patient outcomes, and contribute to the better use of antimicrobials for what is, today, one of the world’s most devastating health issues.”
Sepsis is a life-threatening generalized inflammation from infection; it is the leading non-coronary cause of death in ICUs worldwide and increasing in incidence. It is widely known that early diagnosis and early, targeted treatment improve survival; however, today’s diagnostics are pathogen-focused, insensitive (with a 30-50% failure rate), and slow (taking more than 24 hrs for test results). With currently available testing, it is also difficult for clinicians to distinguish sepsis from Systemic Inflammatory Response Syndrome (SIRS) – an inflammatory state affecting the whole body that presents very much like sepsis, but is not caused by infection.
Worldwide, there are 18 million cases of diagnosed sepsis per year and the incidence is rising at 8 to 10 percent annually; in the developed world, an estimated 1,400 patients die from sepsis each day (~ 511,000 each year). New technologies to allow for earlier detection and personalized management of patients with, or at risk of, sepsis could significantly reduce the financial burden on healthcare systems worldwide through reduced patient mortality; fewer missed cases in the emergency setting; reduced stays in ICU; more targeted use of antibiotics and anti-inflammatories; reduced antimicrobial resistance; and reduced at-risk admissions. Patients at risk of sepsis include infants, mothers after childbirth, the elderly, those with weakened immune systems or those who have experienced significant trauma/injury, invasive surgery, or burns. However, healthy people can also develop and become ill from sepsis.
About Immunexpress Group
Immunexpress is a molecular diagnostic company committed to improving outcomes for patients with, or at risk of, sepsis. Immunexpress’ core competency is the discovery and clinical validation of genomic and proteomic biomarkers, and the translation of these novel biomarkers into clinical diagnostic and monitoring assays for readily available platforms. Immunexpress is a privately-held group of companies with locations in Brisbane, Australia and Seattle, USA. For more information about Immunexpress, please visit: immunexpress.com.
C: +1 212-845-4271
Business Development Contact:
Roslyn Brandon (CEO, Immunexpress Group)
C: +1 206-351-2662