FireflyDX prototype can also detect E. coli and other pathogens in minutes
DELRAY BEACH, Fla., July 18, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- PositiveID Corporation’s (“PositiveID” or “Company”) (OTC:PSID) ExcitePCR subsidiary today announced it successfully tested for Listeria bacterium on its FireflyDX breadboard prototype pathogen detection system (“prototype system”), being developed to detect pathogens at the point of need, which in this case could be a food processing facility.
Listeria was amplified on the FireflyDX prototype system using fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET) chemistry.
Listeria - A Deadly Infection
Listeriosis is a serious infection usually caused by eating food contaminated with the bacterium Listeria monocytogenes, most commonly found in dairy products and produce. Listeria is dangerous for pregnant women and their newborns, older adults, and people with weakened immune systems, as it can cause miscarriage and meningitis. Pregnant women are 10 times more likely to get a Listeria infection. Most people found to have Listeria infection require hospital care and 1 in 5 will die from the infection. An estimated 1,600 people get listeriosis each year.
Critical Need for Onsite Food Safety Testing
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), each year, roughly 1 in 6 people in the U.S. gets sick from eating contaminated food. The 1,000 or more reported outbreaks that happen each year reveal familiar culprits – salmonella and other common germs.
PositiveID is developing the FireflyDX family of products to automate real-time pathogen detection at the point of care/point of need (POC/PON) faster and less expensively than existing devices.
The ability to detect pathogens at the point of need rather than in a traditional laboratory setting, which can take several days to get results, could enable faster quarantine measures to stop the spread of illness before it becomes widespread.
“Food safety is a field we believe FireflyDX’s family of products could be of the greatest value to producers and consumers,” stated Kimothy Smith, Chief Science Officer of ExcitePCR. “Deployment at a food processing facility or pen-side in the case of livestock testing could drastically reduce food-borne illness outbreaks by stopping contaminated food from entering the food chain.”
Currently, Listeria infections are monitored through the CDC’s Listeria Initiative, a surveillance system that collects reports of laboratory-confirmed cases of listeriosis in the U.S. The Listeria Initiative interviews all patients with Listeria infection to collect detailed information about the foods people ate before they got sick.
The FireflyDX prototype system has also successfully detected E. coli, a common food-borne illness.
Once commercialized, FireflyDX's on-site pathogen detection applications are expected to include human clinical, such as infectious disease and hospital acquired infections, global food and agricultural screening, and biological warfare and biothreat defense.
About PositiveID Corporation
PositiveID Corporation is a holding company with a focus on life sciences tools and diagnostics. PositiveID’s ExcitePCR subsidiary develops biological detection and diagnostics systems, specializing in the development of microfluidic systems for the automated preparation of and performance of biological assays. PositiveID’s Thermomedics subsidiary markets the FDA-cleared Caregiver® non-contact infrared thermometer. PositiveID also owns a minority interest in E-N-G Mobile Systems, a leader in the specialty vehicle market. For more information on PositiveID, please visit http://www.psidcorp.com, or connect with PositiveID on Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn.
On August 24, 2017, the Company and its wholly-owned subsidiary PDI (collectively, the “Seller”), entered into an Asset Purchase Agreement (“APA”) with its majority-owned subsidiary, ExcitePCR (the “Buyer”). Pursuant to the APA, at closing, the Company will own approximately 91% of ExcitePCR post-closing of the sale. The Buyer has not yet fulfilled the conditions to close the transaction which include ExcitePCR completing a financing of at least $3 million.
Statements about PositiveID's future expectations, including the likelihood that food safety is a field the Company believes FireflyDX’s family of products could be of the greatest value to producers and consumers; the likelihood that deployment at a food processing facility or pen-side in the case of livestock testing could drastically reduce food-borne illness outbreaks by stopping contaminated food from entering the food chain; the likelihood that once commercialized, FireflyDX's on-site pathogen detection applications are expected to include human clinical, such as infectious disease and hospital acquired infections, global food and agricultural screening, and biological warfare and biothreat defense; constitute "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, and as that term is defined in the Private Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Such forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties and are subject to change at any time, and PositiveID's actual results could differ materially from expected results. These risks and uncertainties include, without limitation, the Company’s ability to complete the testing and development of FireflyDX; the Company’s ability to raise capital; the Company’s ability to close the APA; as well as other risks. Additional information about these and other factors that could affect the Company's business is set forth in the Company's various filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including those set forth in the Company's 10-K filed on April 2, 2018, and 10-Qs filed on May 18, 2018, November 13, 2017, and August 14, 2017, under the caption "Risk Factors." The Company undertakes no obligation to update or release any revisions to these forward-looking statements to reflect events or circumstances after the date of this statement or to reflect the occurrence of unanticipated events, except as required by law.
PositiveID CorporationAllison Tomek
Source: PositiveID Corporation