FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Frederick, MD — October 18, 2011 — Akonni Biosystems, a molecular diagnostics company focused on commercializing rapid sample preparation and molecular diagnostics systems for the detection of infectious diseases, and CUBRC, Inc., have been awarded a $774,000 contract by the U.S. Army to develop an automated sample preparation system for isolating biological threat indicators for downstream use with field-based detection systems. This award will enable CUBRC and Akonni to accelerate development of a family of disposable, rapid, multi-analyte extraction and purification products that utilize Akonni’s TruTip technology for rapid solid phase extraction of nucleic acids and proteins.
Under the contract, Akonni and CUBRC will design, manufacture, and test prototype systems to automatically extract nucleic acid and protein from a single source sample. Development of such systems is critical to the U.S. military for addressing the challenges that biological warfare and terrorism pose to the warfighter. By further simplifying the isolation technologies and removing the majority of manual steps, CUBRC and Akonni will design a system that provides a rapid, reliable, and standardized process for biological threat detection in the field.
CUBRC’s David Pawlowski, Ph.D., Principal Investigator on the contract, states, “We selected Akonni’s TruTip sample preparation technology based on its ability to be integrated into a cartridge-based system and its proven performance in terms of speed, yield, and quality as determined in head-to-head evaluations against the industry gold standards. Akonni’s best-in-class technology has the greatest potential to succeed in the field and save lives.”
“We are very excited to be collaborating with CUBRC and the U.S. Army on this project that will improve the armed forces’ ability to rapidly identify infectious agents and ultimately save lives,” states Kevin Banks, Ph.D., Vice President of Sales and Marketing at Akonni Biosystems. “In TruTip, we have a highly flexible approach for rapidly extracting nucleic acids, and now proteins, with high yield and purity, a technology that is easily integrated into both commercial off-the-shelf pipette tips and custom-built, cartridge-based systems.”
The Defense Threat Reduction Agency provided the funding for this program through the U.S. Army Research Office.
CUBRC® executes Research, Development, Testing and Systems Integration programs in Medical Biotechnology, Chemical and Biological Defense, Data Fusion, Command and Control, Hypersonics, and Public Health and Safety. The professionals at CUBRC apply innovative research, rigorous testing and robust engineering to deliver cutting edge science and technology solutions allied to best-in-class business practices resulting in high quality, responsiveness and customer satisfaction.
Headquartered in Buffalo, New York, CUBRC is committed to its primary objective of generating technological and economic growth in that region. Established in 1983 as an independent, not-for-profit, research corporation, CUBRC combines innovative ideas and technology for the advancement of research in its various business sectors; thus providing “Advantage Through Technology.”
Akonni Biosystems was founded in 2003 and has over 15 patents owned or exclusively licensed with more than three dozen others pending. The company’s core technology is based on work developed at Argonne National Laboratory and the Engelhardt Institute of Molecular Biology and utilizes gel-drop array technologies optimized for medical applications. Supported by a series of government grants and contracts from NIH, CDC, DOE, DOD, NIJ, and NSF, the company has significantly advanced the original technology by improving the system’s capabilities from sample preparation to final result. Commercial products and products in its near-term pipeline include rapid sample preparation methodologies for nucleic acid extraction and multiplex panel assays for detecting multidrug-resistant tuberculosis (MDR-TB), upper respiratory infections, viral encephalitis, and hospital-acquired infections (MRSA).
TruDiagnosis Systems, TruDx Readers, TruArray Tests, TruTip Kits, Primers, Lysis and Binding Buffers, Wash Buffers and Elution Buffers: For Research Use Only. Not for use in diagnostic procedures. No claim or representation is intended to provide information for the diagnosis, prevention or treatment of a disease.