French to the fore in HIV tests

During the XVII International AIDS Conference held in Mexico City this August, keynote speakers from Europe, Latin America and Africa addressed issues including the importance of early detection of HIV infection, the relevance of rapid testing for epidemiology studies, the use of Dried Blood Spots for routine viral-load testing in remote areas, and the experience of South Africa in routine high-volume viral-load testing.

‘One of the latest advances in viral-load monitoring and our most recent developments is the Dry Blood Spot,’ explained the French firm bioMérieux, which organised the integrated symposium ‘Viral Diagnosis is key in the fight against Aids’ at the conference.
Currently used for research purposes, the company plans to expand the availability of this simple test ‘…to bring viral load monitoring to patients in remote areas’.
bioMérieux began its work on HIV testing at the very beginning of the AIDS epidemic 25 years ago, developing one of the first screening tests in 1985. The firm has since produced a stream of innovative tests and technologies to respond to new and changing needs in HIV testing, and reports that it now provides the widest product ranges available to laboratories (with the exception of the US market) for diagnosing and monitoring HIV infection. This range covers third and fourth generation screening tests in various formats (automated immuno-analysers, microplates for high volumes, and rapid manual tests), as well as molecular tests for real-time viral-load monitoring.


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