Healthcare Industry News:  Roche Diagnostics 

Diagnostics HIV/AIDS

 News Release - July 16, 2007

Roche Executes Fastest Market Penetration with HIV Viral Load Monitoring Test, COBAS(R) AmpliPrep(R) /COBAS(R) TaqMan(R) HIV-1

No need to re-baseline cited as influence in purchasing decision

INDIANAPOLIS, July 16 (HSMN NewsFeed) -- One-third of Roche Diagnostics' molecular customer base has already purchased or ordered the COBAS AmpliPrep /COBAS TaqMan HIV-1 assay, just eight weeks after the assay received approval from the Food & Drug Administration to go to market. Quick distribution to the market also allowed physicians to measure HIV patients' prognosis and monitor the effects of antiretroviral therapy within a month of FDA approval.

"This is most successful launch of a new molecular test at Roche Diagnostics," said Susan Zienowicz, Vice President of Molecular Diagnostics at Roche Diagnostics. "Not only have we experienced unprecedented market acceptance of the new HIV-1 assay, but we were able to quickly get the assay into the hands of our customers, who then immediately made this latest technology available to their customers."

In addition to the accuracy and speed provided by the fully automated, real-time PCR test, many customers were influenced to make the purchase because they did not need to re-baseline or recalibrate patients since our comprehensive trials have demonstrated a high correlation between the new COBAS AmpliPrep / COBAS TaqMan HIV-1 test and other HIV viral load methodologies.

Regardless of when a patient was diagnosed or the duration of treatment, the new dynamic range of this test delivers standard of care sensitivity (50 copies/mL) and quantitation between 48 copies and 10,000,000 copies.

Along with four other laboratories in the United States, Mount Sinai Molecular Laboratory participated in a study to cross-validate the analytical performance of the new fully automated platform across different sites in a real-life setting.

"When the five different sites met to compare results, I was happy to see that all the results were extremely consistent across the laboratories, even when different system configurations and different sample types were used," said Dr. Josephine Wu, Assistant Director of the Molecular Pathology Laboratory at Mount Sinai Medical Center, one of the first US laboratories to purchase the COBAS® AmpliPrep® /COBAS® TaqMan® HIV-1 system.

American quick acceptance of the test builds on European adoption, which has helped Roche obtain a majority share of the European viral load testing market for HIV.

"Thanks to our 11 years of experience in HIV globally, Roche Diagnostics had monitored genetic isolates emerging from around the world," said Dr. Tadd Lazarus, Medical Director at Roche Diagnostics. "We have designed the genetic coverage of our assay so that it meets the needs of clinicians, follows monitoring guidelines and reflects most current knowledge of genetic variations. Our newest HIV-1 viral load test continues to deliver full Group M subtype coverage, including the rare non-B subtypes."

About Roche and the Roche Diagnostics Division

Headquartered in Basel, Switzerland, Roche is one of the world's leading research-focused healthcare groups in the fields of pharmaceuticals and diagnostics. As a supplier of innovative products and services for the early detection, prevention, diagnosis and treatment of diseases, the Group contributes on a broad range of fronts to improving people's health and quality of life. Roche is a world leader in diagnostics, the leading supplier of drugs for cancer and transplantation and a market leader in virology. In 2006, sales by the Pharmaceuticals Division totalled 33.3 billion Swiss francs, and the Diagnostics Division posted sales of 8.7 billion Swiss francs. Roche employs roughly 75,000 people in 150 countries and has R&D agreements and strategic alliances with numerous partners, including majority ownership interests in Genentech and Chugai. Roche's Diagnostics Division offers a uniquely broad product portfolio and supplies a wide array of innovative testing products and services to researchers, physicians, patients, hospitals and laboratories world-wide. For further information, please visit our website at .

All trademarks used or mentioned in this release are legally protected by law.

Source: Roche Group

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