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U.S. Department of Defense Awards $2.2 Million to CombiMatrix for Anti-Terrorism and Infectious-Disease Products

Published on July 31, 2007 at 9:25 AM

Acacia Research Corporation announced that the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) has awarded a one-year, $2.2 million contract to CombiMatrix for further development of its microarray technologies for a multipathogen- and chemical-detection system.

Under previously funded programs with the DoD, CombiMatrix has demonstrated that its products can simultaneously detect toxins, viruses, and bacteria using its semiconductor-based microarrays. Unique to this platform is its “on chip” electrochemical detection process, which eliminates the need for complex, expensive, and less-portable optical instrumentation. These systems are currently in use at several military and government laboratories as well as civilian installations.

“The events in the UK, in June, underscore the need for better technologies and products to address the constant threat of terrorist activities. Although the terrorist activity utilized explosives, the threat of chemical or biological weapons persists,” stated Dr. David Danley, Director of Homeland Security and Defense Programs at CombiMatrix. “We are pleased that our government feels that our technology has value in addressing these concerns. Our products are being designed to address biothreat agents as well as infectious diseases of public-health concern, including influenza A and the ‘Bird flu’ subtype along with other upper-respiratory infections.”

Dr. Amit Kumar, President and CEO of CombiMatrix, said, “CombiMatrix’s work with the DoD to address infectious diseases fits nicely with our strategy of developing products for the molecular-diagnostics and the personalized-medicine market segments. We have already launched several microarray-based diagnostics products addressing diseases like childhood abnormalities and hematological cancers. We continue to develop additional products, including those being funded by the US DoD, to ensure a broad and integrated suite of tools to detect and to identify threats to the health of humans and animals regardless of their origin.”

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