The BioPlex 2200 HIV Ag-Ab kit, similar to fourth generation assays, offers early detection of HIV by detecting HIV antigens (proteins that are part of the HIV virus) and HIV antibodies (proteins that are produced by the body to fight the HIV infection).

In addition to the early detection offered by the fourth generation assays, the fifth generation HIV test provides more information by specifically identifying which individual HIV 1 and HIV 2 marker is positive.

This additional information indicates if the patient was recently infected and can help guide follow-up testing.

Bio-Rad Laboratories executive vice president and Clinical Diagnostics Group president John Goetz said that the company is pleased to launch the next generation in HIV screening.

"Bio-Rad has a long history of providing laboratories the tools that they need for HIV detection," Goetz added.

Bio-Rad Laboratories claims that the BioPlex 2200 HIV Ag-Ab kit is the first and only fully-automated, random access multiplex testing system that provides clinical laboratories with the capability to rapidly process or multiplex multiple individual tests that are traditionally processed separately.