A Diagnostics & Imaging Week

Metrologic Instruments (Blackwood, New Jersey) reported the signing of a multiyear, worldwide agreement with Spacelabs Medical (Issaquah, Washington), a patient monitoring division of Spacelabs Healthcare. Spacelabs will market and sell Metrologic bar code scanners for use with the Spacelabs range of patient monitors.

By interfacing with hospital clinical information systems through Spacelabs' intuitive WinDNA software, nurses will be able to document point-of-care treatment accurately and easily, all from a single source.

Supporting the healthcare industry's move toward electronic medical record keeping, the bar code scanner option will enable clinicians to scan patient information directly into a secure electronic record, reducing medical errors, saving process time, and avoiding redundant workflow. Spacelabs has designed its Ultraview monitors to be bar code scanner-ready.

Proteome Systems (Boston) reported the signing of an agreement with Egenix (New York) to co-develop a semen-based diagnostic kit for prostate cancer based on the known proprietary Human Carcinoma Antigen (HCA).

The new non-invasive test, once developed, would offer significant advantages over the current test, and would reduce unnecessary invasive examinations as well as needle biopsies.

The current blood test for prostate cancer measures levels of prostate-specific antigen (PSA). The drawback with the PSA test is that it has a high false positive rate (estimated at up to 75%), meaning it picks up many benign conditions of raised PSA levels in the blood – such as enlargement of the prostate or a prostate infection.

This means that many men who have false positive tests for prostate cancer undergo unnecessary biopsies.

Natus Medical (San Carlos, California) reported that Welch Allyn (Skaneateles Falls, New York), a maker of medical products, has partnered with Natus to bring to market a hearing loss detection solution designed to improve clinical efficiencies by allowing pediatricians to objectively screen for hearing loss in infants, toddlers, and preschool- and school-age children.

"By partnering with Natus Medical we can offer a state-of-the-art solution that will help pediatricians more efficiently care for their patients by more effectively detecting hearing loss, preventing language disabilities, and improving overall patient outcomes," said Steve Meyer, executive vice president, Ambulatory Care and Americas at Welch Allyn. "Pediatricians are under constant pressure to save time, screen and diagnose accurately, and treat patients quickly without compromising care."

"With approximately 30,000 pediatric practices in the U.S., there is a large potential market for this device, and we are very pleased to begin pursuing this growth opportunity with a company with the market reach of Welch Allyn," said Jim Hawkins, president and CEO of Natus Medical. "This partnership provides us with a great opportunity to offer pediatricians an objective, easy-to-use hearing screening solution that is backed by the strength of the Welch Allyn brand and the power of its distribution network."

• Proteome Systems (Boston) reported the signing of an agreement with Egenix (New York) to co-develop a semen-based diagnostic kit for prostate cancer based on the known proprietary Human Carcinoma Antigen (HCA).

The new non-invasive test, once developed, would offer significant advantages over the current test, and would reduce unnecessary invasive examinations as well as needle biopsies.

The current blood test for prostate cancer measures levels of prostate-specific antigen (PSA). The drawback with the PSA test is that it has a high false positive rate (estimated at up to 75%), meaning it picks up many benign conditions of raised PSA levels in the blood – such as enlargement of the prostate or a prostate infection.

This means that many men who have false positive tests for prostate cancer undergo unnecessary biopsies.

Siemens Medical Solutions reported a licensing agreement with Cleveland Clinic (Cleveland) to market reconstruction and calibration software developed by clinic researchers.

Designed to provide clearer images at a higher resolution than traditional single or multi-pinhole collimators, this advanced SPECT solution could allow researchers to "more quickly and accurately image new diagnostic and therapeutic compounds in preclinical studies," the company said. In addition to marketing the software, Siemens expects to release a new multi-pinhole solution based on the clinic's technology.

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