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NEW FDA LICENSED AIDS TEST WILL IMPROVE SPECIFICITY OF HIV CONFIRMATORY TESTING FOR THE BLOOD SUPPLY

 NEW FDA LICENSED AIDS TEST WILL IMPROVE SPECIFICITY OF
 HIV CONFIRMATORY TESTING FOR THE BLOOD SUPPLY
 SOUTHAMPTON, N.Y., Aug. 14 /PRNewswire/ -- Thermascan, Inc. (NASDAQ OTC) announced that uncertainty in confirmatory testing for the human immunodeficiency virus, (the second stage of testing for HIV antibodies following initial blood bank screening procedures), could be virtually eliminated by the recently licensed Fluorognost HIV-1 IFA AIDS test, as reported in a recent study by Red Cross scientists. This FDA approved test is being distributed by Viral Testing Systems Corporation.
 The paper in the September issue of the Journal of Clinical Microbiology focuses on blood samples from former blood donors for which the conventional HIV-1 confirmatory test procedures (Western blot) failed to provide conclusive results. Such "indeterminate" confirmatory test results may or may not be indicative of an early state of infection with the immunodeficiency virus, which causes AIDS. Western blot results may also vary depending on what interpretive criteria are used.
 Fluorognost HIV-1 IFA was able to accurately resolve the status of 53 blood donor samples found to be "indeterminate" by Western blot testing. Four of these donors were found to be HIV infected by the 90-minute Fluorognost assay while 49 tested negative. Theses results were in complete accordance with those obtained with the radioimmunoprecipitation assay (RIPA), a complex procedure available only in research laboratories.
 Although blood units with reactive screening test results are never released for transfusion, improved accuracy of the confirmatory procedure will help to prevent much anxiety on the part of individuals who are provided with uncertain HIV-related test results. In addition, individuals with negative confirmatory test results may be eligible for re-entry into the donor pool upon additional testing following FDA-approved procedures.
 In contrast, individuals with clear evidence of infection can then be accurately notified of their infection and educated about precautions that must be taken to prevent the transmission of HIV infection to their sexual partners.
 -0- 8/14/92
 /CONTACT: E. Hall of American Red Cross, 202-639-3122; or D. Baurs- Krey of Thermascan, VTS, 516-287-3739; or G. Breslow of ProClinica, 212-856-6440/ CO: Thermascan, Inc. ST: New York IN: MTC SU:


SH-LR -- NY059 -- 0125 08/14/92 15:40 EDT
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Date:Aug 14, 1992
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