ProGenTech Limited, a life sciences & diagnostics company based in Shanghai, China and Emeryville, CA has signed a licensing agreement with Human Genetic Signatures, a Sydney, Australia based life science company to gain access to key hospital-acquired infection targets.

Under the terms of the agreement, Human Genetic Signatures will develop assays for MRSA, MSSA, VRE and C. difficile which will then be further integrated into the ProGenTech Entura platforms. It is anticipated that manual assays for these initial targets will be taken to the FDA during 2009 followed by fully integrated and automated versions of the assays in 2010. Launching these assays will mark ProGenTech's initial foray into the molecular diagnostics market.

Dr. Trevor Hawkins, the Chairman & CEO of ProGenTech said, "We are very excited to be working with Human Genetic Signatures to develop and commercialize these assays. The advantages of our 'Press play and walk away(TM)' Entura systems together with the Human Genetic Signatures' 3base(TM) simplification technology will provide a valuable solution to the underserved hospital-acquired infections market."

The key advantage of ProGenTech's Entura platforms is that they greatly reduce the total hands on time historically associated with sample preparation. The Entura uses a unique cassette-based approach in which all reagents for RNA, DNA or protein applications are pre-loaded in the cassette. The user simply adds their samples to the cassettes, loads the cassettes into the system, presses play, and walks away. The initial focus for ProGenTech has been on developing automated solutions for Systems Biology life science applications. This new relationship with Human Genetic Signatures marks the formal launch of ProGenTech's Applied Sciences business which will take products and solutions into the Molecular Diagnostics, Forensics and Immunoassay market segments.

The Human Genetic Signatures' proprietary 3base(TM) technology employs a powerful base modification technique that greatly simplifies the detection of highly variant microorganisms. Easily adaptable to routine assay preparation and amplification methodologies, 3base(TM) can reduce the need for prohibitive multiplexing or cumbersome array-based alternatives. Whilst 3base(TM) can be used for the detection of any microbial target, it is even more useful for detecting pathogens with multiple subtypes or rapidly changing resistance traits. This partnership marks Human Genetic Signatures' entry into the commercial clinical diagnostics market.