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Olympus Diagnostic Systems Group Announces Availability of High Sensitivity CRP Reagents for Cardiac Risk Assessement

(March 17, 2003) Melville, NY - Olympus Diagnostic Systems Group has immediate availability on High Sensitivity C-Reative Protein (CRP) reagents, optimized for use on Olympus AU400e™, AU600™, AU640e™, AU2700™ and AU5400™ chemistry-immuno analyzers.

High sensitivity CRP gives physicians the ability to assess the risk of cardiovascular and peripheral vascular disease before a traumatic event, such as heart attack or stroke. The test detects levels of C-Reactive Protein as low as 0.5 mg/L; much lower than conventional CRP assays used historically as a general test for inflammation. CRP levels are being evaluated as predictors of risk of heart attack or stroke, particularly since inflammation within the arteries occurs in plaque formation that eventually narrows the arteries, a process known as arteriosclerosis. Recent studies have indicated that elevation of CRP levels in the “normal range” may be a more specific indicator for risk than cholesterol or lipid abnormalities. Although precise reference values are yet to be established, CRP values as low as 1.5 mg/L may be clinically significant. The Olympus assay has demonstrated minimal interference from lipemia, bilirubin and hemolysis.

Using Olympus technology, labs may run the assay on their primary clinical chemistry analyzer without the need for a separate nephelometer or heterogeneous immunoassay analyzer. This has broad implications for making the test more readily available in hospital-based, physician group practice, commercial and hospital core laboratories.

“Our goal is to enhance patient care by bringing the best information to the physician quickly,” said Steve Wasserman, Vice President, Olympus Diagnostic Systems Group. “Now that it’s been cleared by the FDA, the assay can be run in low to very high volume labs on our AU400e, AU600, AU640e, AU2700 and AU5400 models. These systems have broad application throughout the healthcare delivery market.”

For additional information about the Olympus reagent line, please visit the Olympus web site at www.olympusamerica.com or call Olympus Diagnostic Systems Group, at 1-800-223-0125.

About Olympus Diagnostic Systems Group
Since 1981, Olympus Diagnostic Systems Group has provided innovative solutions that meet the high productivity demands of hospitals, integrated healthcare delivery networks, reference labs, blood banks and pharmaceutical labs. Offering the broadest standardized line of random access, chemistry-immuno analyzers and lab automation systems, Olympus' solutions save laboratories time, maximize productivity and deliver fast, reliable results.

Olympus Diagnostic Systems Group also offers rapid response technical support nationwide through Olympus Technical Services. Service and support are available to customers seven days a week, 24 hours a day, by calling 1-800-223-0130. From telephone troubleshooting and remote modem diagnostics…on-site customer training and service for hardware, software, application support…as well as training and field support at Olympus' Irving, Texas facility…Olympus Diagnostic Systems Group provides comprehensive customer-tailored solutions to ensure maximum system uptime with reliable results.

For additional information about the Olympus product line, and other services, please call the Olympus Diagnostic Systems Group at (800) 223-0125, or visit the Olympus web site at www.olympusamerica.com.

About Olympus
Olympus Optical Co., Ltd., with its wholly owned subsidiaries, is a global leader in designing, manufacturing and marketing optical-digital product solutions for health care and consumer segments. The company leverages R&D investment in technology and manufacturing processes across diverse business lines that include:

  • minimally invasive diagnostic and surgical endoscopes;
  • advanced clinical and research microscopes;
  • chemistry-immuno analyzers and lab automation systems; and
  • digital and film cameras, and digital voice recorders.
  • In the U. S. and Canada, Olympus America Inc. serves health care, scientific and commercial laboratory markets with integrated product solutions and financial and other service offerings and is the leading brand in gastrointestinal endoscopy and clinical and educational microscopes. The company's market-leading consumer camera products and services business spans North and South America. Olympus America Inc. works collaboratively with its customers and parent company to develop state-of-the-art products and services that are innovative, intelligent, and easy to use. For more information, visit www.olympusamerica.com.