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EraGen set to highlight diagnostic products at BIO

Madison, Wis. - EraGen Biosciences, a Madison-based developer of diagnostic products, will be on display later this month to outline its product development plans.

Irene Hrusovsky, CEO of EraGen, will deliver a presentation on the future of the company to attendees of the Mid-America VentureForum. Another presenter, Loren Peterson, president and CEO of ZyStor Therapeutics, Inc., a Milwaukee-based developer of enzyme replacement treatments, will share the duty of representing Wisconsin's bioscience sector.

Hosted by the Biotechnology Industry Association, the conference will be held Sept. 25-27 in Cleveland, and will provide networking opportunities.

"Certainly this is a great forum to network and reinforce existing and new collaborative relationships. However, the primary reason for EraGen's participation is visibility," explained EraGen spokeswoman Regina Reynolds. "Our continued success depends on being highly visible to venture funding firms, partners, and individuals who can assist us in our ongoing effort to raise money for the company."

EraGen's presentation will focus on its newly launched molecular diagnostic tools. Its success with a test for SARS in 2003 and tests in other segments of the infectious disease market allowed the company to prepare for the fall launch of a respiratory viral panel, a tool that can test for multiple targets in one test. The new diagnostic tool might play an important role in rapidly detecting viruses that cause avian flu and other respiratory illnesses.
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"We will also highlight the recent success with the University of Wisconsin-Madison and Bayer Health Care in the area of cystic fibrosis and [with] Promega Corp. in the life sciences market," Reynolds said. "There are many products on the horizon for EraGen."

EraGen also has worked with the BloodCenter of Wisconsin and AmeriPath to develop the molecular diagnostic tests it has had on the market the past several years.

Reynolds said 2007 will be a very important year for the company with ISO certification anticipated and products moving toward 510K, or pre-market U. S. Food and Drug Administration status.

Increasing company staff will be another important concern for EraGen. The company reported $4 million in revenue in 2005 and has about 30 employees.

"Our goal is to continue to grow our employee base, with expectations to double our manufacturing and development departments over the next few years," Reynolds added.

In addition to these goals, EraGen will look to enhance its management systems and develop preparedness systems to address pandemic and biothreat needs.

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