Timely detection of pertussis or whooping cough with the new CE mark-approved PCR kit, will help prevent the spread of disease, claimed the companies.

Bordetella pertussis is responsible for the occurrence of the contagious respiratory diseases and 30 to 50 million cases are reported each year.

Ideal in diagnosing pertussis from other pneumonia, bronchitis or respiratory viruses, the new PCR kit uses an open system reagent BD MAX ExK DNA-1 Extraction Kit to run on the fully automated BD MAX System, which standardizes the extraction process and provides a better laboratory workflow for customers.

BD Diagnostics – Diagnostic Systems product planning vice president Gregory Meehan said that there is a need to rapidly address the outbreak issues associated with whooping cough in both paediatric and adult cases.

"The Bordetella pertussis/parapertussis real-time PCR kit expands the syndrome-specific menu offering through our partner assays with a test that is timely and highly relevant in meeting the market need," Meehan added.

The disease commonly affects infants and young children and can be fatal especially in infants less than one year of age. Bordetella parapertussis infection is just the same as that of the infection associated with B. pertussis, though it is of milder nature and shorter duration.

The improved BD MAX System’s menu and open capability, full automated facility and standardized workflow, enable laboratories to consolidate a wide range of molecular tests to develop programmes that can address their both current and future clinical requirements.

Diagenode CEO Didier Allaer noted that the kit adds a significant assay to the BD MAX System that facilitates the rapid development of molecular testing assays.