Luminex Corporation has announced that norovirus will be the fourth assay in the launch menu for its new sample-to-answer system, ARIES™. The assay is designed to test for both GI and GII genogroups in a single, easy-to-use cassette.
The previously announced items in the five assay launch menu targeted for the ARIES system also include: Flu A&B/RSV, HSV 1&2, and Clostridium difficile (C. diff). Future menu items will be announced at a later date.
Norovirus is the most common cause of acute gastroenteritis worldwide. In the United States, it causes 20 million illnesses and contributes to over 50,000 hospitalizations each year. Because the infective dose of norovirus particles is very low, it is extremely contagious and can spread quickly especially in enclosed environments such as hospital wards, long-term care facilities, schools, and cruise ships. Norovirus is transmitted directly from person to person and indirectly via contaminated water and food or by touching contaminated surfaces.
"Typically norovirus and C. difficile are the two most likely causes of hospital acquired diarrhea. The presence and burden of norovirus in the hospital and other healthcare settings are often underappreciated," said Dr. Simon Goldenberg, Consultant Microbiologist and Infection Control Doctor, Guy's & St Thomas' Hospital. "Routine, rapid testing for norovirus as a frequent causative pathogen of hospital acquired diarrhea is essential in order to prevent outbreaks and hospital ward closures while reducing cost."
"Norovirus can be a very serious illness especially for the very young, the elderly and those that are immunocompromised," said Patrick J. Balthrop, president and chief executive officer of Luminex. "Because our new ARIES assays are being developed with a universal protocol, allowing laboratories to quickly run C. diff and norovirus at the same time, more rapid patient management techniques can be implemented to stem potentially costly outbreak situations and improve patient care."
With a strong track record as an innovator and as a leader in molecular diagnostics, Luminex Corporation was the first company to commercialize an FDA cleared norovirus test as a part of its comprehensive syndromic xTAG® Gastrointestinal Pathogen Panel (GPP).
Luminex Corporation will soon be the first company to offer multiplexed molecular panels such as GPP as well as rapid, sample-to-answer testing with the introduction of its new ARIES system and menu of assays. This combination will provide hospital labs and their clinicians with the most comprehensive suite of tools available to help manage patients with diarrheal disease.
Luminex will feature its new ARIES System at the Clinical Virology Symposium (CVS), April 27–30 in Daytona Beach, FL, Booth #209. Additionally, during CVS they will host a workshop on Monday, April 28th from 2:45pm - 4:15pm EST, demonstrating the value of xTAG GPP for community-acquired diarrhea, and the burden of norovirus in the hospital setting.