Firefly Dx expands testing capabilities for hospital-acquired infections


The Firefly Dx polymerase chain reaction device from PositiveID recently was able to quickly detect two types of bacteria often found in hospitals and long-term health care facilities, the company announced on Tuesday.

PositiveID said that the Firefly Dx device with an assay from GenArraytion, Inc. was successful in detecting Clostridium difficile (C. diff) in less than 20 minutes as well as methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA). 

“As we progress in the development of Firefly Dx, we not only make engineering improvements to the system, we also increase the breadth of our data by adding to the list of pathogens we can detect,” William Caragol, chairman and CEO of PositiveID, said. “The hospital-acquired infection market is vast, and we believe our ability to successfully detect C. diff, MRSA, MSSA and other pathogens quickly, accurately and cost-effectively, will enable us, upon completion, to provide Firefly Dx to hospitals and other care facilities to help stop the spread of the these and other dangerous infections.” 

Both C. diff and MRSA are antibiotic-resistant pathogens and in recent years have become difficult to treat. C. diff affects approximately 500,000 people annually, many of whom are older patients in hospitals or long-term care facilities.

Transparency Market Research reported that the testing market for hospital-acquired pathogens is expected to have a compounded annual growth rate of 19.3 percent through 2019, which translates to $7.5 billion.

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