Roche unveils powerful innovations in diagnostics at EuroMedLab


New products and scientific evidence help doctors and patients make better-informed healthcare decisions

At the 21st annual meeting of the IFCC-EFLM European Congress of Clinical Chemistry and Laboratory Medicines (EuroMedLab) in Paris, Roche unveiled a series of new diagnostic technologies.

The new products include a new standard system for immunology tests, allowing labs to perform with greater efficiency; an integrated platform for haematology diagnostics; and a dedicated high-throughput analyser to performHbA1c tests for blood glucose management.

“Diagnostics have proven to be one of the most-influential elements in the healthcare value cycle,” said Jean-Claude Gottraux, head of Roche Professional Diagnostics.

“Through our continuous innovation in laboratory diagnostics, we constantly increase testing efficiency, workflow integration and breadth of diagnosis, empowering labs to provide test results ever faster and more reliable. Access to our innovative diagnostic technologies will empower healthcare professionals to make informed healthcare decisions and to treat the right patients, at the right time, with the right intervention.”

In Paris, Roche presented the new cobas e 801 module for immunology testing. The platform is capable of carrying out double the number of tests compared to the previous version, cobas e 602, within the same laboratory space. The system requires smaller blood samples, making it particularly suitable for the diagnosis of vulnerable groups such as neonates, cancer and ICU patients and elderly people.

At the same time, the reduced sample volume leads to less liquid waste, thereby minimising environmental impact of the system. Commercial availability of the cobas e 801 module is planned for 2016.

Roche also introduced the cobas m 511 integrated hematology analyser, that has the ability to transform the practice of haematology testing. The cobas m 511 integrates three instruments into one system, delivering increased medical value and workflow efficiency, enabling labs to save space, money and time. With a low required blood volume of 30 microliters for a complete haematology result including morphology assessment, the cobas m 511 is particularly suitable for paediatric and elderly patients where blood volumes are particularly precious. The system is scheduled for launch in 2016, with an initial pilot program running in four sites across the world by the end of 2015.

Also, for the first time, Roche showed the cobas c 513 blood glucose analyser. It is a dedicated, high-throughput HbA1c analyser suitable for diagnosis, monitoring and risk identification of diabetes patients. It sets new standards in terms of laboratory efficiency as well as safety for laboratory personnel. The cobas c 513 is scheduled for commercial availability in Q4 2015 and is the only high-throughput analyser providing a test that is suitable for diagnosis, monitoring and risk identification of diabetes patients.

Roche has already demonstrated the impact of improved troponin testing to detect more heart attacks, or Acute Myocardial Infarctions (AMIs). The Elecsys cardiac Troponin T – high-sensitive (cTnT-hs) test from Roche detects cardiac troponin, the preferred biomarker for heart attack in clinical practice. In combination with electrocardiogram (ECG), troponin tests have become the gold standard for the diagnosis of AMIs. Recent publications confirm that, used in conjunction with a novel approach for result interpretation, the high sensitivity of the Roche cTnT-hs assay helps to reduce the time to heart attack diagnosis from 3-6 hours to one hour.

Christian Mueller, professor of cardiology at the University of Basel, Switzerland, said: “Increasing evidence shows that the time needed to make decisions in cases of suspected AMI can be further brought down to just one hour, as shown in a recently-published study.”

The hours saved with cTnT-hs are of great importance for patients as every hour of delay from the onset of symptoms to treatment increases the mortality risk. Faster, more-accurate diagnosis is also beneficial to the healthcare system overall as patients with chest pain and other symptoms suggestive of AMI account for approximately 10-20% of all emergency room consultations.

Sign up for your free email newsletter

Though they account for a fraction of worldwide healthcare spending (about 2%), diagnostics contribute to over 60% of medical decision-making. Innovations in diagnostic technologies can, therefore, make a major impact across the healthcare system by helping physicians to make fast and reliable diagnoses. The time to diagnosis is often critical for delivering effective treatment, excluding a disease, reducing the length of hospital stays and unnecessary treatment, while saving time and money, and ultimately improving patient outcomes.