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Speeding up and simplifying diagnostic procedures

Easy-to-use diagnostic tools – like Orion Diagnostica’s QuikRead go® and Orion GenRead® – provide an accurate and rapid way of determining whether an infection is present and identifying a specific pathogen. Thanks to their effectiveness and speed, they can play an important role in ensuring more precise diagnosis, optimal treatment, and better patient care.

Rapid diagnostic tests are valuable in the clinical management of patients with an infectious disease, as they help healthcare professionals distinguish between bacterial and viral infections, detect specific pathogens, initiate appropriate treatment and monitor patient response, and institute the measures needed to control the spread of the infection.

These tests also represent a very useful step forward compared to empirical antimicrobial therapy and one way of combating the spread of antimicrobial resistance. Difficult-to-treat infections linked to drug-resistant bacteria now claim hundreds of thousands lives annually.

Studies have shown that a simple and easy-to-use whole-blood test for measuring C-reactive protein (CRP), for example, can reduce the number of antibiotics prescribed for respiratory tract infections significantly. These infections are the most frequent reason people seek medical attention in many countries today and are responsible for the highest number of unnecessary antibiotic prescriptions in primary healthcare.

New molecular technologies have a lot to offer here, as they provide accurate detection of disease-causing pathogens with a much quicker turnaround time than traditional culture methods, which are laborious, complicated, and timeconsuming, typically taking 2-4 days to provide a result.

QuikRead go CRP measures C-reactive protein from a small finger-stick blood sample and delivers a result in just a couple of minutes.

A growing family of Quikread go® products

QuikRead go CRP, the flagship member of Orion Diagnostica’s QuikRead go point-of-care test system, is an excellent example of this type of solution, as it measures C-reactive protein from a small finger-stick blood sample and delivers a result in just two minutes. A low CRP result translates into a low likelihood of bacterial infection, eliminating the need for antibiotic treatment.

The QuikRead go product family recently acquired four new members: QuikRead go CRP+Hb, QuikRead go hsCRP+Hb, QuikRead go Strep A, and QuikRead go iFOBT.

The first of these, QuikRead go CRP+Hb, extends the reach of QuikRead go CRP by providing a patient’s haemoglobin value in addition to the CRP concentration from one and the same sample. Knowing someone’s haemoglobin level can help assess whether they are suffering from iron deficiency, for example.

The QuikRead go hsCRP+Hb test is a rapid and easy to use point-of-care test designed for measuring low CRP values, as well as haemoglobin levels. Measuring low CRP concentrations can be very valuable when diagnosing and monitoring neonatal sepsis, and conditions that include systemic inflammation, such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and rheumatoid arthritis. In adult patients, permanently slightly elevated CRP levels may also indicate the possibility of recurrent coronary events.

QuikRead go Strep A has been developed to rapidly detect the presence of the Streptococcus pyogenes bacterium (Strep A) from a throat sample of a patient presenting with sore throat. A positive QuikRead go Strep A test result helps the physician prescribe the correct antimicrobial treatment, as clinical symptoms and signs alone are insufficient to determine whether the condition is caused by a bacterium or a virus.

The fourth new QuikRead go product is QuikRead go iFOBT, a quantitative immunochemical test for measuring faecal occult blood (FOB). Excessive occult blood in faeces may indicate colorectal cancer and may call for further investigation of the gastrointestinal tract. The adjustable cut-off concentration feature of QuikRead go iFOBT enables the physician to customise FOB testing in line with study settings, available resources, and national guidelines.

 

First Orion GenRead tests will target pathogens causing gastrointestinal diseases, as well as respiratory tract infections.

A new pathogen detection test system

Orion GenRead® is Orion Diagnostica’s latest test system and offers a novel solution for the easy, accurate, and rapid detection of a variety of pathogens.

It is based on SIBA® (Strand Invasion Based Amplification), Orion Diagnostica’s proprietary isothermal amplification technology, which rapidly amplifies nucleic acids at a low and constant temperature. By eliminating the need for thermal cycling, it has been possible to create a system that is both small and affordable.

The system consists of the small, userfriendly Orion GenRead instrument and ready- to-use reagent kits. Being easy to use and providing rapid results, Orion GenRead makes ondemand molecular testing accessible to a wide variety of laboratories.

A test for Clostridium difficile, which causes nosocomial antibiotic-associated diarrhoea, is the first assay available using the Orion GenRead system. Further tests will target pathogens causing other gastrointestinal diseases, as well as respiratory tract infections.

Both QuikRead go and Orion GenRead are compact in design and provide an intuitive user interface and connectivity to LIS/HIS systems.

 

Forty years of innovative diagnostics

Throughout its 40-year history, Orion Diagnostica’s primary focus has been on developing innovative solutions that promote a quicker and smoother clinical workflow, offer accurate test results and facilitate rapid diagnostic and treatment decisions, and improve the overall quality of care and patient outcome.

The company’s product range covers diagnostic tests for detecting infectious diseases and disorders affecting bone and soft-tissue metabolism, as well as hygiene monitoring tests for locations with strict hygiene requirements.

Orion Diagnostica is part of the Orion Group, Finland’s leading health care company, which develops, manufactures, and markets pharmaceuticals, active pharmaceutical ingredients, and diagnostic tests for markets worldwide.

> Titti Lindberg
(Published in HighTech Finland 2015)