QIAGEN and Chinese Academy of Sciences Form Collaboration for Development of New Molecular Food Safety Tests
Cooperation aims to better detect contaminations in dairy and other food products in China and other Asian countries
Shanghai, September 25, 2008 --- QIAGEN (NASDAQ: QGEN, Frankfurt Prime Standard: QIA) and the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS) announced a collaboration to develop new molecular testing solutions to improve the safety of food products. The "CAS/SIBS-QIAGEN Food Safety Research Collaboration" started officially today in a signing ceremony hosted by Dr. Chen Yan, Director of CAS/SIBS/INS, and Mr. Peer Schatz, CEO of QIAGEN.
The collaboration takes place at the campus of the Institute of Nutritional Sciences (INS), Shanghai Institute of Biological Sciences (SIBS) in Xuhui district, and has been operational since mid-September. QIAGEN will equip the joint lab with instruments and consumables while CAS will provide the physical space and researchers. Under this collaboration, food safety experts from the INS will use QIAGEN technologies, to develop a wide range of molecular tests for the detection of food-borne pathogens. These QIAplex multiplex assays allow the design of highly sensitive molecular tests for up to 50 different pathogens in one single run.
"INS has been looking to work with a well respected international biotechnology company" said Dr. Chen Yan. "This collaboration with QIAGEN will help developing much needed food safety products not only for the Chinese but also for international markets. The partnership will aim to raise food safety standards in our country and thereby prevent any harm to the health of our consumers in the future."
In recent years, the Asian Pacific Region, and particularly China, has become a major exporter of a broad range of food products including rice and poultry and also host of various major international events such as the Olympics and the 2010 Shanghai World Expo. As such, governments of the region have been striving to raise food safety standards to the levels of their trading partners and western countries. Currently, the Chinese government is taking stringent measures to significantly enhance food safety testing, particularly in the dairy sector, following the recent incident involving contaminated dairy products.
Also other rapidly growing Asian economies need to ensure food safety for a growing number of their own consumers - as recent incidents have shown. Many countries still lack the adequate technology or procedures to respond to these developments. According to the WHO, 20 million cases of food-borne infections occur in the Asian Pacific region alone, which accounts for more than 50 per cent of global burden of this disease. "The disease burden and death toll resulting from food-borne infections are not acceptable", says Peer Schatz. "The development and application of new molecular tests provide the most reliable way to mitigate or even prevent these illnesses caused by the consumption of unsafe food here in Asia, while at the same time enhancing the region's value as food exporters. We are therefore very proud to have entered this collaboration with CAS, which will feed the growing demand for quicker, more accurate and more efficient tests for food-borne pathogens by employing the power of the most advanced molecular testing technologies".
QIAGEN N.V., a Netherlands holding company, is the leading global provider of sample and assay technologies. Sample technologies are used to isolate and process DNA, RNA and proteins from biological samples such as blood or tissue. Assay technologies are used to make such isolated biomolecules visible. QIAGEN has developed and markets more than 500 consumable products as well as automated solutions for such consumables. The company provides its products to molecular diagnostics laboratories, academic researchers, pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies, and applied testing customers for purposes such as forensics, animal or food testing and pharmaceutical process control. QIAGEN's assay technologies include one of the broadest panels of molecular diagnostic tests available worldwide. This panel includes the only FDA-approved test for human papillomavirus (HPV), the primary cause of cervical cancer. QIAGEN employs more than 2,800 people in over 30 locations worldwide. Further information about QIAGEN can be found at www.qiagen.com.
About INS, SIBS, CAS:
The Institute for Nutritional Sciences (INS) was established in 2003 by the Chinese Academy of Sciences, as a member institute of the Shanghai Institutes for Biological Sciences. To serve the national interests in promoting public health and biomedical research, the mission of the Institute is to perform cutting-edge research on nutrition-related diseases and food safety. The Institute emphasizes national and international collaborations with academic and research institutions and various industries.
Certain of the statements contained in this news release may be considered forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the U.S. Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the U.S. Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended. To the extent that any of the statements contained herein relating to QIAGEN's products, markets, strategy or operating results are forward-looking, such statements are based on current expectations that involve a number of uncertainties and risks. Such uncertainties and risks include, but are not limited to, risks associated with management of growth and international operations (including the effects of currency fluctuations and risks of dependency on logistics), variability of operating results, the commercial development of the applied testing markets, clinical research markets and proteomics markets, nucleic acid-based molecular diagnostics market, and genetic vaccination and gene therapy markets, competition, rapid or unexpected changes in technologies, fluctuations in demand for QIAGEN's, products (including fluctuations due to the level and timing of customers' funding, budgets, and other factors), our ability to obtain regulatory approval of our infectious disease panels, difficulties in successfully adapting QIAGEN's products to integrated solutions and producing such products, the ability of QIAGEN to identify and develop new products and to differentiate its products from competitors' products, market acceptance of QIAGEN's new products and the integration of acquisitions of technologies and businesses. For further information, refer to the discussions in reports that QIAGEN has filed with, or furnished to, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).