SQI Diagnostics signs development agreement with Silliker

SQI Diagnostics Inc. (TSX-Venture: SQD), a medical systems automation company focused on evolving laboratory-based biomarker testing, today announced that it has entered into a development agreement with Silliker, Inc., a leading internationally accredited company dedicated to improving nutrition, food safety and quality, for the commercialization of a botulism toxin panel that will run on SQI's SQiDman(TM) analytical system.

The IgXplex BOTX panel, when cleared for marketing, will be used to aid in the diagnosis of botulism infection in the food chain by detecting and measuring a group of botulinum toxins. The botulism panel under development has the potential to replace current methodologies to aid in the diagnoses of food-borne botulism, which typically involve time consuming and expensive animal testing. SQI's IgXplex BOTX assay is based on the Company's core FDA-cleared IgXplex multiplexing technology that generates multiple results in a single well in the human in-vitro diagnostics autoimmune market.

Under terms of the agreement, Silliker will purchase SQiDman systems and IgXplex consumables from SQI upon successful development and AOAC validation for the test panel and system. In exchange for the purchase requirements of IgXplex BOTX assays, SQI has granted exclusive global market and distribution rights to Silliker to resell the assay and SQiDman system to its customers, which include some of the world's largest food companies. Going forward, SQI will be responsible to complete commercialization of the IgXplex panel, and Silliker will validate the assay and complete and file all regulatory documents.

"We believe there is a great opportunity to be the world's first commercial user of the only microarray-based multiplexed test for food-borne botulism," said, Russ Flowers, Chairman and Chief Scientific Officer of Silliker.

As previously announced, SQI developed a proof-of-concept of the botulism panel for Silliker, which met all endpoints required for acceptance by Silliker to launch internal studies to verify method performance and validate equivalence to current methods.

"Our emerging customer relationship with Silliker is a continuation of our commercialization process overall as a company and in particular for this market," said Claude Ricks, CEO of SQI Diagnostics. "We look forward to working with Silliker in its growth of food toxin and antigen-based multiplexed testing on the SQI platform, and building out a pipeline of tests in this field."

Botulism is caused by toxin produced by bacteria called Clostridium botulinum. The toxins this bacterium produces are among the most poisonous substances in the world according to the Mayo Clinic. Food-borne botulism are harmful bacteria that thrive and produce toxins in environments with little oxygen, such as in canned food.

Source: SQI DIAGNOSTICS INC.

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