LexaGene’s MiQLab Offers Rapid Plague Detection for Bioterrorism Threats
BEVERLY, Mass., June 17, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — LexaGene Holdings, Inc., (OTCQB: LXXGF; TSX-V: LXG) a molecular diagnostics company, is pleased to announce that today, Dr. Jack Regan, CEO and Founder of LexaGene, will present at the Biothreat and Pathogen Detection Conference regarding the MiQLab™ System’s ability to detect the pathogen that causes plague.
Dr. Jack Regan states, “Our MiQLab System is both open-access and designed for point-of-care use, making it a first-of-its-kind system. These unique features are critical for early point-of-care diagnoses, which improves the probability for successful biocontainment of novel pathogens. The past 18 months have highlighted how badly humanity needs advanced technologies like the MiQLab to more successfully contain a novel pathogen capable of causing a pandemic. MiQLab is uniquely suited to fill the massive technology gap in our testing infrastructure as it has the potential to drastically reduce the response time from initial identification of a novel pathogen to the rapid deployment of new detection tests at the point of care. Minimizing this response time significantly improves the chances of successful pathogen containment so that countless lives can be saved.”
A brief interview with Dr. Regan regarding LexaGene’s value proposition for pandemic prevention can be viewed HERE.
The 28th International Biothreat and Pathogen Detection Conference is an internationally recognized meeting for experts in the detection and identification of biological threats. This conference addresses key topics in pathogen detection and presents the latest R&D and technological innovations in rapid pathogen identification. In addition, this meeting focuses on the latest strategies to overcome the hurdles surrounding the rapid identification of global biological threats and bringing new technologies from the lab to the field.
History is filled with numerous instances of naturally occurring outbreaks of biothreat agents that have collectively killed 100s of millions of people. Plague is arguably the deadliest pathogen of all time. Other pathogens have also caused massive loss of life, including the 1918 Influenza Pandemic, HIV, Ebola,1 and SARS-CoV-2. Unfortunately, intentional use of biothreat agents have been documented from the Middle Ages through both World Wars and even into modern times.2 The most recent examples include the 1984 Salmonella bioterrorism attack in Oregon3 and the 2001 anthrax letters.4
Plague has caused numerous pandemics in the human history.5 Due to its history as a killer and the potential for plague to still cause a large number of deaths and the difficulty of successful containment, it is classified by the government as Category A Bioterrorism agent.6
In order to demonstrate the MiQLab’s capabilities for biothreat agent detection, LexaGene developed a plague test and completed an analytical evaluation with contrived samples.
Dr. Regan comments, “I’m extremely pleased with the quality of our plague test. In silico analysis showed close to 100% coverage of all plague genomes. Analytical studies showed our test to correlate extremely closely with quantitative culture (R2 > 0.94). Our test is also very sensitive, as we were able to reliably detect levels 1000-fold lower than levels of this bacterium commonly detected in the blood of infected patients.7 Lastly, in an exclusivity study, our test did not cross react with any of the tested phylogenetically related microorganisms. These high-quality test results are a testament to the MiQLab’s capabilities as a surveillance and detection tool when faced with a natural or intentional biothreat.”
On Behalf of the Board of Directors
Dr. Jack Regan
Chief Executive Officer & Chairman
About LexaGene Holdings Inc.
LexaGene is a molecular diagnostics company that develops molecular diagnostic systems for pathogen detection and genetic testing for other molecular markers for on-site rapid testing in veterinary diagnostics, food safety and for use in open-access markets such as clinical research, agricultural testing, and biodefense. End-users simply need to collect a sample, load it onto the instrument with a sample preparation cartridge, enter sample ID and press ‘go’. The MiQLab™ system delivers excellent sensitivity, specificity, and breadth of detection and can return results in approximately two hours. The unique open-access feature is designed for custom testing so that end-users can load their own real-time PCR assays onto the instrument to target any genetic target of interest.
The TSX Venture Exchange Inc. has in no way passed upon the merits of the proposed transaction and has neither approved nor disapproved the contents of this press release. Neither TSX Venture Exchange nor its Regulation Services Provider (as that term is defined in the policies of the TSX Venture Exchange) accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release.
This news release contains forward-looking information, which involves known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause actual events to differ materially from current expectation. Important factors — including the availability of funds, the results of financing efforts, the success of technology development efforts, the cost to procure critical parts, performance of the instrument, market acceptance of the technology, regulatory acceptance, and licensing issues — that could cause actual results to differ materially from the Company’s expectations as disclosed in the Company’s documents filed from time to time on SEDAR (see www.sedar.com). Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date of this press release. The company disclaims any intention or obligation, except to the extent required by law, to update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise. Walper SA, et al. Detecting biothreat agents: from current diagnostics to developing sensor technologies. ACS Sens. 2018;3:1894–2024.  Riedel, S. Biological Warfare and Bioterrorism: A Historical Review. BUMC Proc. 2004, 17, 400−406.  https://www.foodsafetynews.com/2009/10/for-the-first-12/  https://www.npr.org/2011/02/15/93170200/timeline-how-the-anthrax-terror-unfolded  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pandemic  https://emergency.cdc.gov/agent/agentlist-category.asp  Montminy, S., Khan, N., McGrath, S. et al. Virulence factors of Yersinia pestis are overcome by a strong lipopolysaccharide response. Nat Immunol 7, 1066–1073 (2006). https://doi.org/10.1038/ni1386