RPS Diagnostics merges to support product launch

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Lumos Diagnostics has acquired all of the stock, through a stock purchase agreement, of Rapid Pathogen Screening Inc., the operating company of RPS.

LAKEWOOD RANCH — Local biotech company RPS Diagnostics has merged with a California firm that will focus on the international launch of RPS’s infections test.

Lumos Diagnostics has acquired all of the stock, through a stock purchase agreement, of Rapid Pathogen Screening Inc., the operating company of RPS. Financial terms were not disclosed.

RPS, now called Lumos, will retain its operational headquarters in Lakewood Ranch, the company said. Business operations will be at Lumos in Carlsbad, California.

The combined company now has 36 employees, and a spokesperson said that number is expected to grow at both locations. Dr. Robert Sambursky, president/CEO of RPS Diagnostics, will continue in that role for Lumos.

Lumos said its initial focus will be the FebriDx test, a rapid, in-office test developed by RPS that incorporates a built-in safety lancet to obtain a fingerstick blood sample, rotating blood collection and transfer system, and integrated push-button buffer activation, to provide clinicians with a rapid assessment of the body’s immune response to an acute respiratory infection, or ARI.

The single-use test identifies patients within 10 minutes that have a clinically significant underlying infection, and aids in the differentiation of viral and bacterial ARIs through the simultaneous detection of both Myxovirus resistance protein A (MxA) and C-reactive protein (CRP) directly from peripheral whole blood. MxA is an intracellular protein that becomes elevated in the presence of acute viral infection, and CRP is an acute-phase inflammatory protein that is elevated in the presence of clinically significant infection.

“Using FebriDx to help triage outpatient ARI is a game-changer because successful antibiotic stewardship requires the clinician to first rule out a clinically significant bacterial infection,”  Sambursky said. “In addition, access to novel Lumos Diagnostics reader technology will facilitate next generation digital enhancements which will accelerate speed to results. …” and more, he said.

Clinical performance from two prospective multi-center U.S. clinical trials showed the FebriDx test’s high accuracy and 97% to 99% negative predictive value to exclude a bacterial infection, the companies said in a news release.

The test has received Health Canada approval, Saudi FDA clearance and is CE marked for sale in Europe. It has not received clearance from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

Through the merger, RPS Diagnostics Inc. received shares in Lumos Diagnostic Holdings PTY LTD, which will serve as the Australian parent company to both Lumos Diagnostics and Rapid Pathogen Screening. Rapid Pathogen Screening is now a wholly owned subsidiary of Lumos Diagnostic Holdings.

“We have evaluated many technologies over the years, and believe that combining RPS Diagnostics’ novel biomarker technology and commercial experience together with Lumos Diagnostics’ reader-based platform results in a highly strategic and synergistic union that will support a robust pipeline and commercial success,” Sam Lanyon, chairman at Lumos, said in a statement.

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