ORACLE DIAGNOSTICS ANNOUNCES AGREEMENT WITH FUTURETECH TO ACQUIRE HIV SALIVA TEST
ORACLE DIAGNOSTICS ANNOUNCES AGREEMENT WITH FUTURETECH
TO ACQUIRE HIV SALIVA TEST
FOSTER CITY, Calif., Nov. 19 /PRNewswire/ -- Oracle Diagnostics, Inc., a new diagnostics company in the San Francisco Bay area, announced today that it has reached an agreement with FutureTech Diagnostic Partners, Ltd. to acquire and commercialize FutureTech's family of rapid "dipstick" diagnostic tests including OraScreen(TM)-HIV, a rapid saliva test for HIV antibodies. Oracle Diagnostics will purchase FutureTech's complete diagnostic technology rights including the OraScreen(TM) "dipstick" tests for an undisclosed amount of Oracle stock. The novel diagnostic methods were invented by Roger Clemmons, D.V.M., Ph.D. at the University of Florida College of Veterinary Medicine. Working with FutureTech, a Gainesville, Fla.-based R&D limited partnership, the research team has successfully completed a three-and-one-half year joint development effort and clinical evaluation on the revolutionary new HIV test.
Oracle Diagnostics announced that it would manufacture three versions of the saliva-based OraScreen(TM)-HIV test: a clinical kit for dentists, physicians and hospitals; an automated saliva analyzer for high volume HIV screening; and an individual test for over-the-counter o?nsumers. The company has established a manufacturing alliance in the Pacific Rim and will begin producing and selling the clinical version of the kit by mid-1992. The company will manufacture all three versions of the HIV kit under FDA guidelines at its corporate headquarters in Foster City, Calif. The formal FDA approval process for the OraScreen(TM) tests will start in 1992.
The company also announced that Jerome A. Mattingly, Ph.D., has accepted the position of president and CEO of Oracle Diagnostics. He is a seasoned diagnostics professional, having been president and CEO of American Bionetics. Previously, he held R&D positions with Litton Bionetics and Organon Teknika. At Oracle, Dr. Mattingly will also act as research director and hire additional professional staff. "Oracle Diagnostics will provide the public and medical practitioners with a continuing series of highly reliable, non-invasive tests for health conditions and infectious diseases such as HIV and hepatitis B," Dr. Mattingly said. "Recognizing the need for simple, inexpensive HIV testing in developing countries, we have undertaken special efforts to make our OraScreen(TM)-HIV test available to the third world while we pursue FDA approval in the U.S." Because the OraScreen(TM)-HIV test works in less than 10 minutes, requires no laboratory equipment and eliminates the risk of drawing blood samples, Mattingly expects the test to come into wide use as the public becomes more aware of the AIDS risk inherent in our society.
Oracle Diagnostics also announced that David E. Fowler, FutureTech's managing director, has been appointed chairman of the board and will assist Dr. Mattingly in the initial commercialization efforts. "The Magic Johnson tragedy has raised everyone's consciousness about AIDS and hopefully has impressed upon people how serious this disease really is. We believe that safe and accessible HIV testing will become another important element, along with safe sex, in curbing the spread of this dreaded disease," Fowler said.
/NOTE TO EDITOR: Black and white photos of Dr. Mattingly are available upon request./
/CONTACT: Jerome A. Mattingly, Ph.D., president of Oracle Diagnostics, Inc., 415-574-4800/ CO: Oracle Diagnostics, Inc. ST: California IN: HEA SU: PDT SS-AW -- FL011 -- 5107 11/19/91 16:35 EST