FULLERTON, Calif. -- Beckman Coulter,
Inc. announces it has signed an exclusive licensing
agreement with Research and Diagnostic Antibodies LLC for R&D Abs'
inducible nitric oxide (iNOS) monoclonal antibodies and patents. iNOS is an
exciting new marker in blood that appears to be useful in for the detection
and management of patients at risk for developing sepsis, a serious medical
Beckman Coulter intends to develop iNOS tests for use on all Beckman
Coulter Access systems, including the SYNCHRON LX i 725 chemistry-
immunoassay system and the high throughput UniCel DxI 800 immunoassay
system. The company hopes to introduce these tests in 2005.
"The manufacture, sales and distribution of a new marker for sepsis can
provide a diagnostic tool for a disease that is severely underserved. Most
importantly, we have the opportunity to improve patient outcomes while
reducing costs," said Mike Whelan, vice president of Beckman Coulter's
immunoassays and nucleic acid testing business center. "The licensing and
development of this important analyte will be another milestone in the rapid
expansion of our immunoassay menu with 'best of breed' assays for management
Sepsis is the body's response to a bloodborne infection. Often the
inflammatory response spirals out of control leading to organ failure, septic
shock and death. Unfortunately, the early signs of sepsis, such as fever and
elevated white blood cell count, are common to many less threatening
conditions. Without sensitive and specific diagnostic tools, sepsis may not
be recognized until it has progressed to a severe, life threatening stage.
The New England Journal of Medicine recently identified sepsis as the second
leading cause of death among patients in noncoronary intensive care units and
the tenth leading cause of death overall in the United States.
"It is my hope that iNOS will enable early diagnosis and management of
patients at risk for sepsis," stated Robert Webber, PhD, president and
founder of R&D Abs. "We are very excited to have licensed our intellectual
property to Beckman Coulter to develop diagnostic assays based upon the
detection of iNOS in blood. Our clinical trial data demonstrates that iNOS
could be an important early marker for the onset of sepsis. Licensing our
technology to Beckman Coulter, a market leader in clinical diagnostic
innovation, is the best approach we can take to develop this test and bring it
According to the Society of Critical Care Medicine, sepsis kills more
Americans than breast cancer, colorectal cancer, pancreatic cancer and
prostate cancer combined, and it affects more than 10 percent of the
14 million patients annually treated in intensive care units in U.S.
hospitals. Of these, approximately 250,000 die of sepsis despite aggressive
and expensive treatments. In addition, care of patients with sepsis has
resulted in an economic burden of more than $17 billion annually in the United
R&D Abs LLC, a private company based in Las Vegas, NV, is a holding
company for the intellectual property developed and patented by its affiliated
company, Research & Diagnostic Antibodies, that discovers and
develops novel immunological reagents for research and clinical applications.
The test for sepsis is the company's most advanced clinical project and is
based upon its patented iNOS monoclonal antibodies. The company is developing
additional clinical tests for other diseases using human iNOS as a specific
biochemical marker of disease. R&D Abs also has on going projects to identify
other unique markers of disease based upon its proprietary technologies.
Beckman Coulter, Inc. is a leading manufacturer of biomedical testing
instrument systems, tests and supplies that simplify and automate laboratory
Source: Beckman Coulter, Inc.