Aug 23, 2010

EPA Awards Contract for Detection of Parasites in Water Resources

Precision Antibody to develop monoclonal antibodies to two species of Cryptosporidium

Precision Antibody announced its selection by the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to develop monoclonal antibodies to two species of Cryptosporidium ("Crypto"), an intestinal parasite that has emerged over the past 20 years as one of the most common causes of waterborne illness in the United States.

According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, between 2006 and 2008, Crypto was responsible for 42% of reported recreational water-associated gastroenteritis in the United States, and 6% of reported drinking water-associated outbreaks. The development of antibodies that substantially improve the sensitivity and specific detection and typing of this parasite over currently available methods may lead to improved tests for detecting Crypto in drinking water supplies and recreational waters as well as the potential to develop effective treatments for people infected by the pathogen.

The terms of the contract call for Precision Antibody to apply its technology to generate specific antibodies that bind with a high level of specificity to the two most predominant Crypto species, C. parvum and C. hominis.

"With increasing numbers of people worldwide contracting illness from Crypto-contaminated water, we are excited that the EPA has awarded Precision Antibody a contract to develop these important antibodies," said Jun Hayashi, Ph.D., vice president of Precision Antibody. "Our goal is to deliver highly specific antibodies that will substantially improve the detection of Crypto and allow a better understanding of this tenacious parasite."