US-based medical technology company BD Biosciences launched its BD FACSPresto Near Patient cluster of differentiation 4 (CD4) counter system this month.
The counter provides absolute and percentage results of CD4 T lymphocytes and haemoglobin (Hb) concentration in whole blood samples to stage and monitor HIV/Aids patients.
With an intuitive language-independent graphical touchscreen interface and on-board videos to guide operation, the BD FACSPresto system can be easily transported and operated off a rechargeable battery, enabling patients even in remote settings to receive critical CD4 testing, explains BD Biosciences president Claude Dartiguelongue.
CD4 testing enables HIV/Aids patients to have access to treatment and monitoring, reducing the probability of transmitting the infection to others and providing a plan for improved long-term care.
Dartiguelongue highlights that immediate treatment for infected individuals who meet medical guidelines can dramatically slow down the spread of HIV, according to the nonprofit organisation the World Health Organisation (WHO).
This is particularly important as many new cases of HIV/Aids are transmitted from people who are not aware they are infected, he adds.
“The BD FACSPresto system extends the ability to stage and monitor HIV/Aids patients close to their homes,” says Dartiguelongue.
“We have taken great care to ensure that the system meets the needs of resource-limited settings, such as featuring intuitive operation, without compromising our standards of precision and high-quality results,” he adds.
The workflow begins with blood collection from a finger stick, or venipuncture, and is transferred to a single-use disposable cartridge.
To increase the number of tests that can be conducted each day, the cartridge is incubated outside the instrument for 18 minutes. After incubation, the cartridge is inserted into the BD FACSPresto system and results are available in less than four minutes. To ensure quality and consistency of testing, on-board reagent and instrument quality control is performed with each result, he explains.
Results from clinical studies demonstrate that the BD FACSPresto system performs comparably with traditional analysers, including the BD FACSCalibur cell analysis system, in terms of accuracy, precision and linearity across a wide measuring range, highlights Dartiguelongue.
Bringing this same level of testing precision to resource-limited settings assures operators and patients of a high degree of confidence in results.
The cartridge uses dried reagents and offers stability across a wide range of storage conditions. In addition, the system is portable and weighs only 6 kg.
The BD FACSPresto system is CE-in vitro diagnostics marked and is priced competi- tively, compared with existing CD4 systems currently on the market, concludes Dartiguelongue.