[ASC-media] Media release: instant diagnosis by biochip

JCA Media jcamedia at starclass.com.au
Mon Aug 9 10:06:23 EST 2004

Sir Mark Oliphant Conferences 2004 Media Release

Monday, August 9, 2004


Your overall state of health and your risk of developing heart disease or cancer may in future may soon all be checked in a matter of minutes, as part of a routine trip to the doctor.

The Biochip being developed by Australia's Diagnostics Cooperative Research Centre is opening the way for this possibility.

"There is a growing opportunity to develop a novel diagnostic Biochip that will be capable of simultaneous diagnosis of a wide range of diseases and health status biomarkers," says Professor Peter Hudson, deputy CEO of the Diagnostics CRC.

"This will take place in the doctor's office using a hand held device, and will take only minutes."

The Biochip technology will use what Professor Hudson terms the "exquisite targeting specificity" of antibodies to diagnose and predict disease. Antibodies are proteins produced by the immune system in its fight against infection by bacteria and viruses.

Professor Hudson will present his research at the Sir Mark Oliphant Conference on Converging Technologies for Agriculture and Environment from 9-12 August at the Duxton Hotel, 328 Flinders St, Melbourne.

In the laboratory, antibodies can be generated to match a wide range of targets. This will enable Biochips to be designed which carry a range of antibodies - and which also have many uses outside human health.

"There are a number of potentially important Biochip applications in the areas of the environment and agriculture," says Professor Ian Gardner, CEO of the Diagnostics CRC. "As well as [applications] for both infectious diseases and genetic testing in plants and animals, the detection of biowarfare agents and rapid monitoring of environmental pollutants are some of the areas in which this technology can be applied."

Professor Hudson is scheduled to talk at 3.00pm on Tuesday August 10 on the use of high-affinity bio-reagents, such as antibodies, to detect emerging infectious diseases and biowarfare agents, including SARS and anthrax.

More information:
Professor Peter Hudson, Diagnostics CRC, 03 9662 7320 
Peter.Hudson at csiro.au

Professor Ian Gardner, Diagnostics CRC, 07 3864 4015
i.gardner at qut.edu.au

At the conference on Tuesday, Aug 10:
c/- Duxton Hotel, Melbourne, 03 9250 1888
or Richard Gill, CRC for Microtechnology, 0417 477 244      richard.g at microtechnologycrc.com

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