Rand Capital Corporation (Nasdaq: RAND) (“Rand” or “Rand Capital”), a business development company, announced that one of its portfolio companies, Rheonix, Inc., along with Mérieux NutriSciences, successfully concluded early-access customer evaluations of Rheonix’s Listeria PatternAlert™ assay. Mérieux is a leading global testing lab with over 100 labs worldwide. Rheonix has partnered with multiple early access customers, including food testing laboratories, food companies and food industry associations to evaluate the assay. In all, Rheonix and its early access customers have conducted thousands of tests on real-world samples. The breakthrough method rapidly identifies molecular patterns for Listeria directly from enriched samples, assisting food producers in identifying harborage sites for persistent Listeria and in tracing back sources of contamination. The company recently began commercializing the assay directly to food companies and commercial testing labs.
In a recently published case study, Mérieux NutriSciences describes its collaboration with a food manufacturer to evaluate the practical application of the Rheonix Listeria PatternAlert™ technology. Analysis of the results identified a harborage site in a warehouse as well as likely encroachment into a production area, enabling Mérieux to quickly recommend targeted actions.
“We were thrilled with the results of these evaluations, and with the insights the Mérieux team provided throughout our collaboration,” said Brooke Schwartz, Rheonix Vice President of Strategy and Marketing. “With food producers experiencing a growing need to better understand the source of Listeria contamination in their facilities, this innovative technology provides a truly practical solution. The Mérieux case study demonstrates how manufacturers can use this rapid, cost-effective method to reduce the risk of finished product contamination in their facilities.”
Alternative strain typing methods take up to two weeks to complete, which limits their use in routine testing. The Listeria PatternAlert™ assay, which is performed using Rheonix’s fully automated Encompass Optimum™ workstation, enables users to detect molecular patterns in as little as seven hours after a presumptive positive diagnostic screening result. With the PatternAlert software, users can match their patterns across locations and time to rapidly identify harborage sites and dissemination paths, enabling them to make same day operational changes in their facilities.
Allen F. (“Pete”) Grum, President and Chief Executive Officer of Rand Capital, added, “We are pleased to support Rheonix in their mission to develop relevant and affordable molecular testing to address unmet needs. As an early investor, we are proud of their advancements in the field of molecular testing, from diagnostics labs to applied markets testing for food and beverage applications.”
Rand began investing in Rheonix in 2009, having invested $2.8 million to date.
Rheonix has developed the suite of Encompass workstations, fully automated systems that provide highly multiplexed sample-to-answer molecular testing for use in clinical, research and applied testing laboratories. With minimal hands-on time, the Encompass systems offer true walkaway simplicity. Rheonix’s growing portfolio of multiplexed food and beverage testing solutions includes the Beer SpoilerAlert™ assay, the most comprehensive beer spoilage panel available; the Listeria PatternAlert™ assay, a rapid method for identifying patterns of molecular targets present in Listeria direct from an enriched sample; and the NGS OnePrep™ solution, a fully integrated and automated DNA extraction and library prep solution. With Rheonix, getting more information from your sample has never been easier. For more information, refer to: http://rheonix.com/.
ABOUT RAND CAPITAL
Rand Capital (Nasdaq: RAND) is a Business Development Company (BDC) with a wholly-owned subsidiary licensed by the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) as a Small Business Investment Company (SBIC). Rand currently focuses its equity investments in early or expansion stage companies and generally lends to more mature companies. The Company seeks investment opportunities in businesses with strong leaders who are bringing to market new or unique products, technologies or services that have a high potential for growth. Additional information can be found at the Company’s website where it regularly posts information: http://www.randcapital.com/.
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