Feeds

Flu chip fights pig plague

Pick your pandemic

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup

As swine-flu mania continues to suck up every available nanosecond of fear-mongering media maundering, one small company has developed a sure-fire way to detect the potent piggy pathogen.

CombiMatrix, a biotech firm in Mukilteo, Washington, announced Friday that it has updated the microarray in its Influenza A Detection System to identify the pesky H1N1 virus that's been causing all the trouble.

And they did it quickly. According to the company, they updated their microarray within within one day of receiving information on the genetic sequence of the new strain.

The company's Influenza A Detection System isn't limited to detecting evil swine sequences. CombiMatrix says that it can identify any known flu variant, including "novel strains" produced by rapid mutation or recombinations of multiple strains.

For example, the system can identify such celebrity viruses as the formerly fearsome bird flu, 1968's pandemic Hong Kong flu, the current swine flu's 1976 evil twin, and the highly successful - from its point of view - virus that killed around 50 million people in 1918.

The old saw that with every crisis comes opportunity is certainly true for CombiMatrix. The company has lost money each of the past four years, pulling in a mere $6.3m (£4.2m) in sales in 2008.

Perhaps a worldwide flu pandemic is just what the doctor ordered. ®

Boost IT visibility and business value

More from The Register

next story
Our LOHAN spaceplane ballocket Kickstarter climbs through £8000
Through 25 per cent but more is needed: Get your UNIQUE rewards!
Cutting cancer rates: Data, models and a happy ending?
How surgery might be making cancer prognoses worse
Boffins ID freakish spine-smothered prehistoric critter: The CLAW gave it away
Bizarre-looking creature actually related to velvet worms
CRR-CRRRK, beep, beep: Mars space truck backs out of slippery sand trap
Curiosity finds new drilling target after course correction
SpaceX prototype rocket EXPLODES over Texas. 'Tricky' biz, says Elon Musk
No injuries or near injuries. Flight stayed in designated area
Brit balloon bod Bodnar overflies North Pole
B-64 amateur ultralight payload approaching second circumnavigation
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Scale data protection with your virtual environment
To scale at the rate of virtualization growth, data protection solutions need to adopt new capabilities and simplify current features.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?