A first-of-its-kind test that detects HIV infection earlier than ever before in the United States; a molecular assay for identification of two common sexually transmitted diseases; and an enhanced integrated analyzer offering significant workflow improvements; are among the many new advances Abbott (NYSE: ABT) will highlight at this year's American Association for Clinical Chemistry Lab Expo (AACC) which starts today in Anaheim. In all, Abbott is sponsoring 29 scientific posters reporting on new clinical diagnostics research in areas such as heart disease or cardiac care, transplant, renal disease and cancer; three scientific industry workshops; and 15 main stage presentations at the Abbott exhibit booth (#6808).
"Abbott is focused on improving patient care by offering innovative solutions for our laboratory customers and the patients and physicians they serve," said Brian Blaser, senior vice president, Diagnostics, Abbott. "At this year's AACC, we will feature our latest assays and systems which offer solutions to meet the demanding needs of healthcare institutions by improving operational efficiency, clinical outcomes, and physician, patient, and laboratory satisfaction."
Abbott AACC Highlights
- Advances in HIV Testing Foster Early Detection: Last month, the FDA approved Abbott's ARCHITECT HIV Antigen/Antibody Combo Assay, a first-of-its-kind new HIV diagnostic tool. Since the test detects both HIV antigens and antibodies, Abbott's test can identify infection days earlier than other antibody-only tests currently used in the United States. Earlier detection is critical in controlling the spread of the virus since it is estimated that up to 50 percent of ongoing transmissions come from people who were recently infected.
- New Molecular Assay for Better Detection of Chlamydia and Gonorrhea: Abbott is also featuring the Abbott m2000, an automated system that integrates sample preparation and extraction with real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR) amplification and detection technology. Abbott announced a significant addition to the m2000 system's menu of tests in June with the FDA clearance of a new molecular assay to simultaneously detect gonorrhea and chlamydia, including a new variant strain of chlamydia discovered in Sweden.
- ARCHITECTPLUS Helps to Manage Patients and Improve Lab Efficiencies: Abbott's ARCHITECTPLUS enhanced ARCHITECT family of immunochemistry analyzers will also be showcased at this year's AACC. This enhanced ARCHITECT system includes new features which will help labs streamline operations and improve efficiencies resulting in improved performance and outcomes for laboratories.
- PLEX-ID System for Rapid Microbial Identification: Abbott's new PLEX-ID system will also be on display. The system is designed for broad and rapid identification of bacteria, viruses, and fungi, however, it is currently not available for use in diagnostic procedures. In 2009, PLEX-ID was recognized by both The Scientist and the Wall Street Journal as a top scientific innovation.
Key Abbott Workshops
All workshops will be held at the Hilton Anaheim Hotel, California Pavilion D
- Tuesday, July 27 at 7 a.m.: Michael Busch, M.D., Ph.D., Blood Systems Research Institute, University of California San Francisco, and Peter Leone, M.D., University of North Carolina Chapel Hill, will headline an Abbott workshop entitled: "25 Years of HIV Diagnostics and Beyond: The Future of HIV Testing and Confirmation." These world-renowned HIV experts will review Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) HIV testing recommendations; report the latest information on HIV incidence in the United States; and provide insights into choosing tests and confirmatory algorithms.
- Tuesday, July 27 at 6 p.m.: The topic of managing seriously ill patients will be addressed in Abbott's workshop entitled, "Evolving Role of the Laboratory in Management of Acutely Ill Patients." The session will present a strong overview of acute cardiac and renal illnesses and relate the emerging clinical acceptance of new biomarkers like troponin and neutrophil gelatinase associated lipocalin (NGAL) for rapid diagnosis and management of these patients. The speakers are Allan S. Jaffe, M.D., Mayo Clinic; Prasad Devarajan, M.D., University of Cincinnati Children's Hospital; and Fred S. Apple, Ph.D., Hennepin County Medical Center, Minneapolis.
- Wednesday, July 28 at 7 a.m.: As labs and laboratorians continue to struggle with doing more with less, and with fewer errors, Abbott turns the spotlight on solutions to laboratory quality management issues with a workshop entitled, "Transform Your Laboratory Operations with Six Sigma Quality, Informatics and Automation," featuring Sten Westgard, Westgard QC; Sharon Cox, Saint Francis Hospital System; and Ed Mede, Abbott Diagnostics.