The A/C Diagnostics unit of AntiCancer (San Diego) reported receiving FDA clearance for its A/C Portable Enzymatic Homocysteine Assay on the A/C Diagnostic Reader, using a genetically-engineered enzyme specific for homocysteine. The assay can measure total homocysteine (tHCY) in a three-step, single-enzyme procedure, with the A/C Diagnostics Reader, a small, portable fluorescence reader, and can assist diagnosis and treatment of hyperhomocysteinemia, a risk factor for cardiovascular disease and other diseases. This test is can be carried out in a small lab, a doctor's office or a pharmacy as it requires small amounts of blood, even from a finger prick, AntiCancer said. The assay kit is only for in vitro use.

• Cardiac Science (Bothell, Washington) reported the launch of the Quinton Q-Tel RMS 3.1, an electronic reporting system, offering the benefit of a marked reduction in paperwork common to cardiac rehabilitation programs, the company said. "We want our products to expedite patient recovery and simplify the administration of cardiac rehabilitation programs," said Ren Mitchell, Cardiac Science's director of diagnostic marketing. "With dozens of cardiac rehab managers' input, we designed four new reports to streamline reporting and create more time for patient care. The reports also support American Association of Cardiovascular and Pulmonary Rehabilitation certification."

• Concentric Medical (Mountain View, California) reported launch of the Merci distal access catheter (DAC), which assists neurointerventionalists with easier distal access and enhanced support during minimally invasive procedures in the brain, it said. The DAC also can be used with the Merci Retrieval System to remove thrombus in patients suffering an ischemic stroke.

• Cook Medical (Bloomington, Indiana) reported launch of its Advance 18LP Balloon Dilatation Catheter, a .018" wireguide-compatible PTA balloon for use in patients with lesions of the peripheral arteries (including the iliac, renal, popliteal, infrapopliteal, femoral and iliofemoral), as well as obstructive lesions of native or synthetic arterio-venous dialysis fistulae. The catheter will be an integral part of Cook's Advance PTA balloon line and will play a major role in Cook's leg therapies program, the company said. The catheter has 4 Fr sheath compatibility through 7 mm diameters. It uses a thermal setting of the balloon folds for improved rewrap and sheath pull-back. A double-lumen shaft construction using optimized nylon-blend material reduces balloon inflation/deflation time and improves pushability while maintaining kink resistance, Cook said.

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