Microbix Announces Proof-of-Concept Demonstration for LumiSort™ — its Livestock Semen Sexing Technology
Flow Cell Could Take Cytometric Semen Sexing To a New Level of Speed and Accuracy
TORONTO, May 4 /CNW/ - Microbix Biosystems Inc. (TSX:MBX), a biotechnology company commercializing novel technologies for livestock semen sexing and other innovative biologics, announced today that it has achieved a major development step for LumiSort™, its semen sexing technology.
Microbix reports that LumiSort has now achieved early "proof-of-concept" for the key component of this cutting-edge technology. Further, the developmental analysis completed by Lathrop Engineering Inc., a leading Silicon Valley technology development company, has demonstrated that Microbix' technology may enable the analysis and separation of sperm cells up to 10 times faster, and with higher precision compared to current market technology . The technology is useful for all kinds of cells, including asymmetric, non-spherical cells like sperm that are difficult to analyze on conventional cytometers.
Supporting these results, Microbix has again broadened its aggressive intellectual property strategy to cover LumiSort's applications. The company is also reaffirming its product pipeline guidance and expects to launch LumiSort in the second half of 2012.
William J. Gastle, Microbix' Chief Executive Officer said, "With today's proof-of-concept achievement and its demonstration of potential breakthrough cytometric attributes, LumiSort's upside could transform Microbix into a major technology development company with significant licensing revenues."
Robert Lathrop, founder and CEO of Lathrop Engineering, said, "We are pleased to join with Microbix in the development and engineering of their novel technology for sperm cell sorting and the general cytometry market. In our work to realize the concepts described in the intellectual property underlying the LumiSort device, we have been impressed by the simplicity and power of the approach. LumiSort addresses the historically difficult problem of sperm cell sorting in a new and innovative way, and we expect this discovery to result in significant gains in throughput and efficiency."
Microbix has established agreements for LumiSort with companies located in the United States, Canada, Australia, Europe, South America, and China representing more than 35% of the dairy semen collection centers and will enter a global animal reproduction market for artificial insemination valued at more than $ 3 billion. All agreements include the same royalty payment to Microbix of 15% of selling price. Now, within 18 months of launch, the Company is accelerating its program to sign license agreements with additional distributors.
In 2010, Microbix announced two partnerships including one with an engineering firm focused on the development of the technology and the other with one of the largest suppliers of livestock reproduction products in the world. The second firm has invested in the program through a milestone based, $2 million investment, and will rapidly deploy LumiSort into their markets.
About Microbix' LumiSort™
LumiSort is a completely new concept in instrument based selection technology that will improve the yield and quality of sexed semen by a significant margin over methods used in the livestock industry today. It incorporates a novel and innovative instrument design to address fundamental problems with existing commercial sex selection technologies, while providing Microbix with a strong and well differentiated intellectual property advantage in the industry. Microbix expects to introduce LumiSort to the dairy and beef livestock management markets before the end of 2012. The technology will not only provide a much higher quality product leading to higher conception rates, but is also expected to improve significantly the sexed semen production yield.
About Microbix Biosystems Inc.
Microbix Biosystems Inc. specializes in the development of biological technologies and commercializing them through global partners. The Company has intellectual property in large market biotherapeutic drugs, vaccine technologies and animal reproduction technologies. Established in 1988, Microbix is headquartered in Toronto.
About Lathrop Engineering. Inc.
Lathrop has provided novel and comprehensive product development services for nearly 30 years. Lathrop's mastery of analytical and design tools mesh with a breadth of engineering skill sets and disciplined ISO processes to deliver the best product at the right cost, on time and on budget. Their innovative and highly trained professionals handle projects from IP concept through transfer to manufacturing. Lathrop's communications, capabilities, and program management skills combine to provide unparalleled support for their clients.
This press release contains forward-looking statements, which are subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those set forth in the forward-looking statements including the risks associated with commercializing technologies, including sales which may not reach sales targets or be made at all, there is no guarantee that the Company will complete development of any technology and if it does that it will perform to commercially exploitable levels, other technologies may emerge before any technology developed by the Company enters the market, royalty rates may not be achievable, markets may not sustain demand for any product should world economies shift significantly, market utilization rates may not be reached, market value of products may vary, product launch dates and market utilization timetables may not be met; risks associated with the ability to license LumiSort to industry; risks associated with failure to develop and commercialize LumiSort; non-adoption of LumiSort; competition in the animal reproduction and related markets; reliance by Microbix on third parties for the development and manufacture of LumiSort instrument; general economic conditions; intellectual property risks including challenges to protecting the Company's intellectual property rights, patents may not provide adequate protection of the Company's intellectual property, may not be successfully prosecuted and may be subject to challenge and risks of infringement of third party rights; risks of operating in foreign jurisdictions, including operating in countries with evolving legal and economic infrastructure; high rates of inflation; changes in taxation policies, and Microbix' ability to attract and retain qualified employees and management. These forward-looking statements represent the Company's judgment as of the date of this press release. The Company disclaims any intent or obligation to update these forward-looking statements.For further information:
Visit www.microbix.com or contact: William J. Gastle, CEO, (416) 234-1624 x 230; or James Long, CFO, (416) 234-1624 x 265.