O誰eill anti-microbial resistance report highlights the necessity for the Atlas ioョ test platform for infectious diseases

Print 02 June 2016

CE-marked CT test gives results in 30 minutes

Bath, UK, 02 June 2016. Atlas Genetics Ltd (“Atlas Genetics” or the “Company”), the STI Point-Of-Care (POC) molecular diagnostics company, today notes the major issue of antibiotic resistance for Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs), as highlighted in the UK Government commissioned anti-microbial resistance report, chaired by Jim O’Neill – ‘Tackling Drug-Resistant Infections Globally’ and recently referenced on the BBC program Newsnight. The O’Neill report recommends that in high income countries health system leaders should ‘support the uptake and use of rapid point-of care diagnostics in primary and secondary care’[1].

The Atlas Genetics io® system, which is CE-marked and cleared for the sale within the European Union for Chlamydia, is the first molecular POC test for a Sexually Transmitted Infection (STI) to enter the market, capable of delivering test results in just 30 minutes. As well as tests for other STIs, Atlas Genetics are developing a range of products, as part of the “Precise” project, in collaboration with St George’s University of London, that will not only detect the presence of STIs but provide invaluable antibiotic resistance information at the same time.

It typically takes patients several days from having a sample taken to receiving their test results. Because of this delay, doctors often treat presumptively and frequently prescribe a strong front-line antibiotic for fear of treatment failure due to resistance, or even the wrong antibiotic based on the patient’s symptoms. The speed of the Atlas Genetics io® system gives doctors the ability to prescribe the appropriate antibiotic immediately.

Dr Chan, Director General of the World Health Organization, said:

“Today, antibiotics are rarely prescribed based on a definitive diagnosis. Diagnostics tests can show whether or not an antibiotic is actually needed, and which one. Having rapid, low-cost, and readily available diagnostics is an essential part of the solution to this urgent problem.”[2]

Dr Tariq Sadiq, Chief Investigator of the NIHR invention for innovation (i4i) programme funded “Precise” project at St George’s, University of London, which is developing a POC test for drug resistance with Atlas Genetics commented:

“There will be real benefits of using the Atlas Genetics io® as patients will be able to receive the appropriate treatment immediately. In gonorrhoea for example, for the majority of cases there is often no need for injection of very strong front-line antibiotics when more economic antibiotics can effectively treat the problem. Using this more targeted approach means doctors can prescribe the right antibiotic with confidence, reducing the risk of resistance to these newer, stronger antibiotics by sparing their use for when actually needed and potentially generate large savings for healthcare systems.”

John Clarkson, CEO of Atlas Genetics, added:

“As highlighted in the O’Neill report, STIs are on the rise and the faster a diagnosis can be made, the faster treatment can be given. This not only benefits the patient but also reduces the burden of unnecessary antibiotic use on the NHS and saves the clinician time and money. We believe that our io® platform will play a critical key role in the future of STI diagnosis.”


Atlas Genetics Ltd

Atlas Genetics develops ultra-rapid point-of-care (POC) diagnostic tests for infectious diseases. The Atlas Genetics io® System uses patented technology based on the use of a novel electrochemical sensor that combines speed, accuracy and multiplex detection capability. The Company has its head office and R&D facilities near Bath in the UK, with a commercial office in Boston, USA.

For further information visit www.atlasgenetics.com

St George’s, University of London

St George’s, University of London, is the UK’s only university dedicated to medical and health sciences education, training and research. As well as training the healthcare professionals of the future, our research focuses on the prevention and treatment of disease in the fields of population health, heart disease and infection, three of the greatest challenges to global health in the 21st Century.

For further information visit www.sgul.ac.uk


The National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) is funded by the Department of Health to improve the health and wealth of the nation through research. The NIHR is the research arm of the NHS. Since its establishment in April 2006, the NIHR has transformed research in the NHS. It has increased the volume of applied health research for the benefit of patients and the public, driven faster translation of basic science discoveries into tangible benefits for patients and the economy, and developed and supported the people who conduct and contribute to applied health research. The NIHR plays a key role in the Government’s strategy for economic growth, attracting investment by the life-sciences industries through its world-class infrastructure for health research. Together, the NIHR people, programmes, centres of excellence and systems represent the most integrated health research system in the world. For further information, visit the NIHR website (www.nihr.ac.uk).

The invention for innovation (i4i) programme is a translational funding scheme to advance healthcare technologies and interventions for increased patient benefit in areas of existing or emerging clinical need.

[1] P.74, O’Neill report

[2] P.35, O’Neill report


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