Please activate JavaScript!
Please install Adobe Flash Player, click here for download

EH 1_2015

EUROPEAN HOSPITAL  Vol 24 Issue 1/15 30 LABORATORY Report: John Brosky Automation of high-volume biochem- istry and immunology laboratories has been on-going for more than a decade, yet central laboratories only recently dared to take on the daunt- ing task of automating the more complex processes of microbiology. Microbiology tests are performed on a far more diverse range of speci- men formats and workflows, require more time-intensive manual opera- tions, incubation periods, experi- enced reading of results, and reflex testing that leads to further analysis. To develop a comprehensive sys- tem more rapidly, bioMérieux, a leading microbiology company, has formed a strategic partnership with Copan, an Italian firm specialised in the automation of traditionally manual tasks performed in microbi- ology labs. According to François Lacoste, bioMérieux Corporate Vice President of the Clinical Unit since last year, the partners intend to develop a comprehensive, modular solution for microbiology that will start with upstream manual tasks, such as the streaking of Petri dishes, and contin- ue to automate processes along the entire workflow to the downstream reporting of test results. ‘Automation itself is not a magic solution,’ he said, adding that, while automated instruments for microbi- ology have been introduced, there remain stand-alone operations that are not connected to the larger lab systems. ‘Reporting patient informa- tion more quickly to physicians, and improving the standard of care, are driving a revisit of the way microbi- ology labs work, a need to reassess the processes and see where auto- mation can be applied.’ Other dynamics that are accel- erating the need for automation in microbiology labs is the aging of the workforce of technicians and an increasing stringency for accredita- tion and for traceability. Lacoste said bioMérieux has already developed other modules for automation, ‘…some key assets that we will bring to the co-devel- opment agreement with a goal of merging the best from each com- pany’, he added. Additional capabilities to be devel- oped that move to downstream pro- cesses include plate transport sys- tems moving specimens into smart incubators, where imaging systems replace visual reading of the plates with algorithms to detect, without an intervention by a technician, the presence or absence of pathogens growing on the plates. bioMérieux brings to the final stages of the workflow its Myla mid- dleware with what Lacoste termed ‘…a capability to connect different systems, to follow, monitor and opti- mise workflow between systems, and finally to provide reports to the lab managers and technicians’. It also contributes to improve the overall lab efficiency. Under the terms of the agreement, Copan has granted distribution rights to bioMérieux for its Walk- Away Specimen Processor (WASP) and the WASPLab system, effective immediately in France, Germany and United Kingdom. Progressively, these rights will extend to other countries. The specimen processor allows customers to add capabili- ties such as broth inoculation, gram staining, or diffusion for antimicro- bial susceptibility testing. ‘We want to be able to go step by step with customers, first provid- ing key components, such as the Walk-Away Specimen Processor and WASP lab and, said Lacoste, ‘over time, providing additional capabili- ties, including an integration of bioMérieux’s Myla middleware plat- form.’ He noted that, while Copan has an installed base of 250 WASP systems and a strong brand recogni- tion, there are 30,000 microbiology lab operations worldwide, creating a broad opportunity for partners to build on bioMérieux’s leading sales and marketing position in this lab analytics segment. bioMérieux is present in more than 150 countries through 42 sub- sidiaries and distributors. In 2014 the company reported full year rev- enues of €1.698 billion. Reducing laborious microbiology testing One step detection of toxigenic C. difficile ©ChristianGanet French and Italian firms aim to automate manual tasks Reliable, rapid and there’s no re-testing A graduate of the National Veterinary College of Toulouse and with post- graduate degrees from the Pasteur In­sti­tute, Paris in Virology and from the National Veterinary School, Maison Alfort, in Immunology, Francois Lacoste held various management positions in R&D at Rhône Mérieux and Merial. He joined bioMérieux as Executive Director for Design Control and Clinical Trials in 2000, and, from 2005 to 2011 was Global Executive Director for R&D Immunoassays. In April 2011, he was appointed Corporate Vice-President of the Immunoassays Unit and, in July 2013, he took additional responsibility for Global Quality. He has been Corporate Vice-President of the Clinical Unit since April 2014. A new CE-IVD certified molecular test has been added to Greiner Bio- One’s Genspeed test portfolio for nosocomial infections. In addition to the recently introduced MRSA test, the Genspeed C.diff OneStep test addresses the international need to combat Clostridium difficile (C. diff) infections. The test is analysed on the Genspeed R2 Analyser. CDI is causing antibiotic-associ- ated diarrhoea (AAD) that can lead to pseudomembranous colitis and even to death. It is estimated that C. Diff infections leads to an average of 1-3 weeks longer hospital stays, increasing costs in Europe of up to €3 billion annually. Recent EUCLID study data reveal that more than 39,000 C. diff cases might be missed due to lack of clini- cal suspicion or inadequate labora- tory testing. To prevent an infection spreading it is essential to know the C. diff sta- tus of patients as quickly as possible. Staying one step ahead ‘The Genspeed C.diff OneStep test identifies toxigenic C. diff by combining detection of Glutamat­ dehydrogenase (GDH), Toxin A, Toxin B and binary toxin in a sin- gle, molecular diagnostic test,’ the manufacturer reports. ‘The complete analysis including the detection on the Genspeed R2 Analyser takes under 100 min – time can vary with validated PCR-cycler used – and fea- tures a simple, one-step molecular diagnostic test following the motto OneStep - one test - four results. ‘The test avoids currently used sequential two-step diagnostic test procedures, which combine different test sys- tems and assay principles for GDH and the C. diff toxins,’ the manufac- turer adds. ‘The rapid Genspeed C.diff OneStep test provides conclusive results with- out the need for confirmatory re- testing and enables inter-laboratory comparisons of test results.’ Additionally, ready-to-use reagents and automated dispensing minimise the number of manual process steps within the workflow. ‘The virtually service-free system is simple to operate and,’ Greiner adds, is available at an attractive cost-benefit ratio.’ * Available for 48 or 16 reactions, each kit consists of a Genspeed Preanalytics Kit (for sample preparation) and Genspeed C.diff OneStep Test Kit. The Genspeed R2 Analyser and Genspeed C.diff OneStep test

Pages Overview