Prionics AG and PrioSense Join Forces in the Development of the First Diagnostic Live Test for Mad Cow and Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease
ZURICH, Switzerland and JERUSALEM, April 30 /PRNewswire/ -- Prionics AG, the world leader in prion diagnostics, and PrioSense, a newly founded spin-off company of Hadasit at the Hadassah University Medical Centre in Jerusalem, have started the joint development of a live test for prion diseases. The test is based on the recent discovery of disease associated prion protein in the urine of both animals infected with BSE and humans infected with Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease (CJD). "Current diagnostic screening tests can only be used for post mortem diagnosis of the disease as they require brain tissue for analysis," explains Dr. Ruth Gabizon who is directing the research at PrioSense. "The new urine based test provides reliable early indicators of the prion disease." It will for the first time facilitate screening of live animals and humans for prion diseases. The joint research project of Prionics and the Israeli scientists is based on a previous co-operation in an EU project. In this project the research unit at Hadassah University led by Ruth Gabizon had succeeded in demonstrating for the first time the existence of disease associated prion protein in urine of humans and cattle. "We are very excited about the new range of applications for prion testing, particularly in the field of human medicine", says Dr. Bruno Oesch, CEO and Head of Research at Prionics. "For years we thought that live tests might not be possible based on the direct detection of prion proteins in body fluids, but might require testing of less reliable third markers. The prion protein correlates 100% with disease and therefore facilitates the highest accuracy in diagnosis of BSE and CJD." "We are delighted to formally partner with Prionics," said Dr. Raphael Hofstein, managing Director of Hadasit and Director at PrioSense. "It is an honour to work with a company that is internationally recognised for its competence in prion diagnostics as well as for its technological and marketing skills." :: About Prionics The Swiss company Prionics AG is the global leader in the early diagnosis of prion diseases. The company is renowned for revealing the extent of the mad cow disease spread in Europe with their BSE tests. The company has evolved into the worlds leading centre of competence for prion diagnostics. Research and Development projects in the fields of neurology and prion diseases are the business fields in which Prionics is active. Prionics' research team is part of a network of prion specialists and leading neuroscientists from all over the world. :: About PrioSense The seminal work of Dr. Ruth Gabizon at Hadassah University has led to the foundation of the spin-off company PrioSense. In 2001, the investment company Wolfson-Clore-Mayer provided Hadasit Ltd. (see below) with the initial investment to establish the company, with the express purpose of pursuing the research, development and marketing of innovative diagnostic and therapeutic products for the control and treatment of neurodegenerative diseases. :: About Hadasit Ltd. Hadasit Medical Research Services and Development Ltd. promotes and markets the intellectual property generated by the Hadassah Medical Organisation (HMO), a leading medical and research institution in Israel. Hadasit utilises the expertise, technologies and patents produced by Hadassah research teams in the fields of medical biotechnology, medical devices and medical diagnostics for commercial purposes. Hadasit has already established more than a dozen start-up companies, obtained patents on over 200 new concepts and is actively involved in preparing numerous research projects for presentation to the marketplace. http://www.prionics.ch
SOURCE Prionics AG
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