A*STAR and Veredus Laboratories Create Market's First Lab-on-Chip for the Detection of Multiple Tropical Infectious Diseases

A*STAR and Veredus Laboratories Create Market's First Lab-on-Chip for the 
Detection of Multiple Tropical Infectious Diseases 
SINGAPORE -- (Marketwired) -- 04/25/13 --  The Agency for Science,
Technology and Research (A*STAR) and Veredus Laboratories, a leading
supplier of innovative molecular diagnostic tools, announced the
launch of VereTrop(TM), the first biochip in the molecular
diagnostics market that can identify 13 different major tropical
diseases from a single blood sample.  
With its high level of automation, this lab-on-chip diagnostic kit is
poised to transform the quality and efficiency of testing tropical
infectious diseases, including dengue fever, malaria, chikungunya,
and hand, foot and mouth disease, in the field.  
The lead virologist in this project, Associate Professor Lisa F.P. Ng
from A*STAR's Singapore Immunology Network (SIgN) said, "Tropical
diseases often reflect common symptoms like fever, and may not be
accurately diagnosed early by doctors. This portable test kit is a
rapid and reliable method to accurately test for multiple pathogenic
targets from just one blood sample in a matter of hours."  
Together with Prof Laurent Renia, an expert in Malaria Immunobiology
at SIgN, the team from SIgN has successfully validated the kit on
patient samples in the external fields of Northern Thailand, at the
Thai-Myanmar border.  
Professor Francois H Nosten, the clinical collaborator at the Oxford
Clinical Unit in Mae Sot and Director of the Shoklo Malaria Research
Unit said, "This technology opens new possibilities for the accurate
and rapid diagnostic of important infectious diseases that remain the
main causes of illness in the tropics. Its versatility and ease of
use will change the approach to diagnostics at the periphery of
health care system." 
Developed with infectious disease expertise from A*STAR's SIgN, this
biochip, which operates on STMicroelectronics' Lab-on-Chip platform,
was initiated between ETPL, the technology transfer arm of A*STAR,
and Veredus in 2009[1]. Prior to this, Veredus had licensed
diagnostic technology from A*STAR in the areas of influenza and
"Veredus and A*STAR have worked on several collaborative projects
dating back to 2004," said Dr. Rosemary Tan, CEO of Veredus
Laboratories, a Singapore-based, majority owned subsidiary of
STMicroelectronics. "This latest project on VereTrop Lab-on-Chip has
combined the strengths and expertise of A*STAR, Veredus, and
STMicroelectronics to create a powerful multiplexed molecular product
that can rapidly detect and differentiate symptomatically similar
tropical infectious diseases and enable timely proper treatment." 
"After this journey of more than three years, we are glad that such a
compelling technologically-advanced product with global healthcare
benefits is ready to be launched to the market. Veredus is a good
example of how local companies can work with A*STAR for a consistent
stream of technology to develop products that can enhance their
offerings and level them up to be competitive and relevant globally,"
said Philip Lim, Chief Executive Officer of ETPL. 
Annex A - List of tropical diseases that can be detected by
About the Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR) 
The Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR) is
Singapore's lead public sector agency that fosters world-class
scientific research and talent to drive economic growth and transform
Singapore into a vibrant knowledge-based and innovation driven
In line with its mission-oriented mandate, A*STAR spearheads research
and development in fields that are essential to growing Singapore's
manufacturing sector and catalysing new growth industries. A*STAR
supports these economic clusters by providing intellectual, human and
industrial capital to its partners in industry.  
A*STAR oversees 20 biomedical sciences and physical sciences and
engineering research entities, located in Biopolis and Fusionopolis
as well as their vicinity. These two R&D hubs house a bustling and
diverse community of local and international research scientists and
engineers from A*STAR's research entities as well as a growing number
of corporate laboratories. For more information about A*STAR, please
visit www.a-star.edu.sg 
About ETPL 
ETPL is the technology transfer arm of the Agency for Science,
Technology and Research (A*STAR), Singapore's lead agency for
fostering world-class scientific research and talent. A*STAR oversees
14 biomedical sciences, physical sciences and engineering research
institutes, and six consortia and centres. As a one-stop resource,
ETPL supports A*STAR in transforming the economy through driving
innovation and commercializing its research outcomes.  
Also known as Exploit Technologies Pte Ltd, ETPL enhances the
research output of A*STAR scientists by translating their inventions
into marketable products or processes. Through shaping and
facilitating licensing deals and spin-offs, ETPL actively engages
industry leaders and players to commercialise A*STAR's technologies
and apply them to building ecosystems that benefit business, industry
and economy. For more information, please visit http://etpl.sg 
About Veredus Laboratories Pte Ltd 
Veredus Laboratories Pte Ltd was founded in 2003 and launched its
first products in 2005. Veredus is a Singapore-based majority-owned
subsidiary of STMicroelectronics (NYSE: STM), a global semiconductor
leader serving customers across the spectrum of electronics
Veredus specializes in the development, manufacture, and marketing of
innovative multiplexed molecular solutions in the clinical,
specialty, and custom testing markets based on STMicroelectronics'
proprietary Lab-on-Chip platform. The Lab-on-Chip platform, marketed
as the VerePLEX(TM) Biosystem, combines
Micro-Electro-Mechanical-Systems (MEMS) with micro-fluidics to
integrate multiplexed DNA amplification with microarray detection for
rapid, cost-effective, and accurate analysis of biological materials. 
Further information on Veredus can be found at www.vereduslabs.com. 
About STMicroelectronics
 ST is a global leader in the semiconductor
market serving customers across the spectrum of sense and power and
automotive products and embedded processing solutions. From energy
management and savings to trust and data security, from healthcare
and wellness to smart consumer devices, in the home, car and office,
at work and at play, ST is found everywhere microelectronics make a
positive and innovative contribution to people's life. By getting
more from technology to get more from life, ST stands for
 In 2012, the Company's net revenues were $8.49
billion. Further information on ST can be found at www.st.com. 
List of 13 Tropical Diseases and corresponding sub-species detected
by VereTrop(TM) 

   To                            To                                        
 detect        Disease      discriminate             Subspecies            
               African                    Trypanosoma.brucei rhodensiense  
    1      trypanosomiasis        1          (T.Br)/ Trypanosoma.brucei    
         (Sleeping Sickness)                      gambiense (T.Bg)         
           Human American                                                  
           trypanosomiasis        2        Trypanosoma.cruzi cruzi (T.Cc)  
          (Chagas disease)                                                 
    2          Malaria            3        Plasmodium falciparum (P.fal)   
                                  4           Plasmodium vivax (P.viv)     
                                  5            Plasmodium ovale (P.O)      
                                  6          Plasmodium malariae (P.m)     
                                  7          Plasmodium knowlesi (P.kn)    
    3       Typhoid Fever         8            Salmonella typhi (ST)       
    4     (Weil's syndrome)       9            Leptospira.interrogans      
                                               Leptospira. kirschneri      
    5        Melioidosis         10        Burkholderia pseudomallei (BP)  
    6     Chikungunya Fever      11          Chikungunya virus (CHIKV)     
    7       Dengue Fever         12       Dengue serotype 1 virus (DENV 1) 
                                 13       Dengue serotype 2 virus (DENV 2) 
                                 14       Dengue serotype 3 virus (DENV 3) 
                                 15       Dengue serotype 4 virus (DENV 4) 
    8         West Nile          16            West Nile Virus (WNV)       
    9       Yellow Fever         17           Yellow Fever Virus (YFV)     
   10       Encephalitis         18      Japanese Encephalitis Virus (JEV) 
   11     Rift Valley Fever      19           Rift Valley Virus (RVV)      
        Hand, foot and mouth                                               
   12      disease (HFMD)        20       Human enterovirus A EV-71 (EV71) 
          Hemorrhagic fever                                                
   13    with renal syndrome     21             Puumala virus (PUUV)       
                                 22              Tula virus (TULV)         
                                 23        Dobrava-Belgrade virus (DOBV)   
                                 24              Seoul virus (SEOV)        
                                 25             Hantaan virus (HTNV)       
          Syndrome (HCPS or      26              Andes virus (ANDV)        

VereTrop PR: http://hugin.info/152740/R/1696162/558515.pdf 
PR_IMAGE: http://hugin.info/152740/R/1696162/558517.jpg  
[1] ETPL funded the project from the onset - designing the sequence
probes, developing and validating the chip, up to acquiring samples
for clinical validation.
For media queries, please contact: 
Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR)
Dr. Sarah Chang
Tel: (65) 6826 6442
Email: chang_kai_chen@a-star.edu.sg 
ETPL (A*STAR's Technology Transfer arm)
Ms. Amanda Lee
DID: (65) 6478 8443
Email: amanda_lee@etpl.sg  
Veredus Laboratories
Mr. Boey Taik Boon
Corporate External Communications
STMicroelectronics Asia-Pacific
Tel: +65 6427 7765
Email: taik-boon.boey@st.com 
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