Sep 13, 2012
Verisante rolls out Aura Beta units for clinical testing
VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA, 12 September 2012 – Verisante Technology, Inc. (TSX-V: VRS, OTCQX: VRSEF, Frankfurt: V3T) (the “Company” or “Verisante”), a leader in cancer detection technology, announced today that Aura™ Beta units continue to be placed at field testing sites across Canada.
Aura™ is indicated for use for the evaluation of skin lesions that may be clinically suspicious for melanoma, squamous cell carcinoma and/or basal cell carcinoma when a medical professional chooses to obtain additional information to rule out one of the above conditions before making a final decision to biopsy.
After initial testing at the Skin Care Centre at Vancouver General Hospital (VGH) and at the BC Cancer Agency, beta units have been placed in Calgary and Edmonton, with additional units to be placed in Ontario for tests on consenting patients.
“Testing our beta units in real world conditions is an important final step as we ready to make the device available in the markets where we have approval to sell, and move towards full commercialization of Aura™,” said Thomas Braun, President & CEO. “Aura™ is a proven device, which has the potential to improve patient outcomes, reduce wait times and also save the health care system time and money.”
Field testing is expected to last three to four months, during which both patients and clinicians are blinded to Aura™ results. The purpose of the testing is to refine usability, assess how it works in a clinical environment and to collect data that will be used for software verification purposes.
“As a practising dermatologist, I see the growing need for a device such as Aura™ to better serve our patients,” said Dr. Andrei Metelitsa, co-director, Institute for Skin Advancement, and clinical assistant professor, Division of Dermatology, University of Calgary. “Clinical study results show the ability of Aura™ to efficiently assist in diagnosing skin cancer. Any tool that can be used to evaluate suspicious skin lesions quickly and accurately is a welcome addition to a dermatological practice.” As part of the University of British Columbia’s clinical study, the Verisante Aura™ was used to scan approximately 1,000 lesions at the Skin Care Centre at VGH over a six-year period. Results from that study published this year in Cancer Research, a peer-reviewed journal of the American Association of Cancer Research, showed the Verisante Aura is 99 per cent accurate in differentiating all major skin cancers from benign lesions and the device offers the potential for reducing unnecessary biopsies by 50 to 100 per cent.
Aura™ is a non-invasive optical system that uses Raman spectroscopy to biochemically analyze the skin, providing immediate and accurate results. The device will help to automate the current process of diagnosis, allowing rapid scanning of the 20 to 40 skin lesions on at-risk individuals, improving patient outcomes and comfort.
Early detection is key to saving the lives of melanoma patients and saving healthcare costs. When melanoma is diagnosed and treated in the earliest stages, the survival rate is 99 per cent and it costs about $1,800 to treat it. In the late stages, the survival rate decreases to 15 per cent, while the cost to treat it increases to $170,000.
Aura™ has been approved for sale in Canada, Europe and Australia.
About Verisante Technology, Inc.
Verisante is a medical device company committed to commercializing innovative systems for the early detection of cancer. The Verisante Aura™ for skin cancer detection and the Verisante Core™ series for lung, colon and cervical cancer detection utilize a proprietary cancer detection platform while the operating software and probe technology are unique to each device. The cancer detection platform was developed by the BC Cancer Agency and tested and refined at the Skin Care Centre at Vancouver General Hospital. This exclusive platform technology allows Verisante to develop and offer a range of compact, non-invasive cancer detection devices that offer physicians immediate results for many of the most common cancers. The Aura™ has been approved for sale in Canada, Europe and Australia. The Core™ has not yet been approved for sale.
Verisante Aura™ was recently awarded Popular Science Magazine’s “Best of What’s New Award” for 2011, and Verisante Core™ was named one of the top 10 cancer breakthroughs of 2011 by the Canadian Cancer Society. In addition, the Company was named a finalist for the 2011 Regional Awards for New Technology by the Canadian Manufacturers & Exporters and the National Research Council of Canada and named as the year’s top ranking Technology and Life Sciences Company on the TSX Venture 50.
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