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THERMASCAN STATEMENT ON UNRESOLVED HIV-1 ANTIBODY STATUS

 THERMASCAN STATEMENT ON UNRESOLVED HIV-1 ANTIBODY STATUS
 SOUTHAMPTON, N.Y., July 22 /PRNewswire/ -- Thermascan, Inc. (OTC) today advised the chairman of the 8th International Conference on AIDS, Dr. Jonathan Mann, that an important new technology recently approved by the FDA for testing HIV-1 antibodies in human serum or plasma, has not been used to screen the blood of patients diagnosed with AIDS, but reported to be HIV-1 antibody negative. Without including the new immunofluorescence assay (IFA) technology to test these patients, Thermascan suggested that it is unclear if these patients are infected with a new, undetectable strain of the virus, or if other tests simply did not pick up the presence of HIV-1 antibodies.
 This information was offered in response to the recent disclosure by the CDC that 11 patients, including five Americans, have developed full- blown AIDS without testing positive for the HIV-1 virus.
 Fluorognost HIV-1 IFA uses fixed, whole, target T-cells to present a unique set of HIV-1 antigens and may, therefore, detect HIV-1 antibodies that other tests don't, suggests a spokesman for Thermascan, the U.S. distributor of Fluorognost HIV-1 IFA.
 Fluorognost HIV-1 IFA is licensed by the FDA as a more specific test for HIV-1 antibodies in samples found repeatedly reactive on screening tests, such as ELISA (enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay), and it is licensed as a screening test in hospital laboratories, medical clinics, physicians' offices and emergency care situations and in blood banks or other settings where other


tests are not practical or available. Technical training materials are supplied with Fluorognost kits.
 Clinical data show that Fluorognost HIV-1 IFA is equivalent in sensitivity to licensed ELISA tests and equivalent in sensitivity and specificity to licensed WB (Western blot) tests. Clinical studies also show that the IFA results are rarely indeterminant and may help resolve samples which are indeterminant on WB tests.
 Thermascan informed Dr. Mann that they will make Fluorognost HIV-1 IFA test kits available to researchers wishing to test patients diagnosed with AIDS but HIV-1 negative by other tests.
 Thermascan, Inc. is the merger partner of TeleConcepts Corp. (AMEX). Next month, shareholders of TeleConcepts and Thermascan are expected to approve the merger of the two companies. After the merger, the medical diagnostics and biotech business will continue in a separate company, Viral Testing Systems Corporation (symbol: VTS). The telephone business will continue as TeleConcepts Inc. (new symbol: TCX), currently listed on the American Stock Exchange.
 -0- 7/22/92
 /CONTACT: Detlev Baurs-Krey of Thermascan, 516-287-3739, or M. Snyder of Proclinica, Inc., 212-856-6440/ CO: Thermascan, Inc. ST: New York IN: MTC SU:


PS-SB -- NY086 -- 2023 07/22/92 14:40 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Jul 22, 1992
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