October 14, 2009
Amphion Innovations PLC (AIM: AMP) investee company Myconostica Ltd has launched a new test to identify one of the most common causes of fungal pneumonia. The assay, MycAssay Aspergillus, is a real-time PCR (polymerase chain reaction) test which accurately and rapidly identifies infections caused by Aspergillus.
Myconostica, in which Amphion holds a 22 percent stake, is a UK-based medical diagnostic company specialised in molecular diagnostic tests for life-threatening fungal infections.
In a statement, it said pneumonia caused by Aspergillus is the leading cause of infectious death in leukaemia and bone marrow patients with an estimated 10 million people at risk globally each year. Studies have shown that diagnosis of Aspergillus infection followed by antifungal treatment within the first 10 days of infection reduces mortality from 90 to 40 percent thus highlighting the necessity of rapid diagnostic testing.
While traditional methods may take up to 10 days to produce a result, MycAssay Aspergillus, combined with Myconostica’s fungal DNA extraction system, can deliver it within 3 hours.
MycAssay Pneumocystis, for the detection of infections caused by Pneumocystis jirovecii was launched earlier this year and further tests in the MycAssay series will also target critical fungal infections, such as Candida, Myconostica added.
Amphion’s other investments include a 19.99 percent stake in Kromek, 15.3 percent in Firestar Software, 8.5 percent in Axcess International, 38.5 percent in Motif Biosciences, 50 percent in MSA Holdings B.S.C., 24.4 percent in M2M Imaging Corp, 25 percent in Private Markets, 14.6 percent in WellGen and 100 percent in DataTern.
Amphion builds shareholder value in high growth companies in the medical and technology sectors, by using a focused, hands-on company building approach, based on decades of experience in both the US and UK.
It does not invest in speculative technologies requiring long development timeframes or excessive capital investment; it looks for defensible core intellectual property and know-how for long-term competitive advantage, and growth potential in very large markets of at least US$1 billion in size. Each partner company is chosen with the goal of achieving an exit valuation in excess of US$100 million.
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