Qiagen to Provide Blood Screening Technologies in Brazil
Posted: May 28, 2009
Qiagen (Venlo, The Netherlands) entered into an agreement to supply molecular sample and assay technologies for a new national, PCR-based blood screening program for HIV and Hepatitis C (HCV) in Brazil. Qiagen will provide Bio-Manguinhos, the main provider of vaccines and diagnostics to the Brazilian Ministry of Health, with a significant volume of molecular testing solutions, such as sample and assay technologies, related instrumentation, operational know-how and training. Following the approval by the Brazilian patent authorities, the agreement will run for five years and contains options for subsequent extensions.
For Qiagen, this contract marks another, significant step in its expansion into the emerging Latin and South American markets. This expansion reflects the company's efforts to supply integrated molecular testing solutions for the improvement of health and living conditions in the region. In October 2008, Qiagen and the Mexican Public Health Agency SSA signed an agreement for the supply of sample and assay technologies to be used in a national screening program for human papillomavirus (HPV).
Under the terms of this agreement, Qiagen's extraction and testing components will be included in the screening kits and sold in a format featuring Bio-Manguinhos's name and branding. The kits will run on a high-throughput multiplex PCR platform that allows processing of large numbers of samples and detecting multiple pathogens in one single run. The highly automated platform, which includes an advanced control system based on biosafe viruses developed and patented by Bio-Manguinhos, has demonstrated excellent screening results in the field test. The partnership between Qiagen and Bio-Manguinhos also involves technical advice for implementation of the production of enzymes and buffers in Brazil, but excludes the delivery of primers and probes. These integral test components are developed and provided by Bio-Manguinhos.