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BioMérieux’s New CE-Marked Mass Spectrometry System Makes Lab Life Easier During COVID-19 Pandemic

By LabMedica International staff writers
Posted on 10 May 2021
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Image: VITEK MS PRIME (Photo courtesy of BioMérieux)
Image: VITEK MS PRIME (Photo courtesy of BioMérieux)
BioMérieux (Marcy-l'Étoile, France) has announced the CE-marking of VITEK MS PRIME, the next generation of the VITEK MS MALDI-TOF1 mass spectrometry system for routine microbial identification in minutes that aims to make lab life easier during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Rapid microorganism identification is a pivotal step in the microbiology workflow. Over the past decade, Matrix-Assisted Laser Desorption Ionization Time of Flight (MALDI-TOF) mass spectrometry has transformed this process, providing critical information rapidly to clinicians in order to prescribe more effective antimicrobial therapy. Including time-saving innovations to deliver faster identification results, VITEK MS PRIME is a compact benchtop system designed to increase laboratory productivity for greater impact to patient care.

VITEK MS PRIME is a Matrix-Assisted Laser Desorption Ionization Time of Flight (MALDI-TOF) mass spectrometer that analyzes material from microbial cultures to provide microorganism identification. Samples are submitted to multiple laser shots inside VITEK MS PRIME. The matrix absorbs the laser light and vaporizes, along with the sample, in the process gaining an electrical charge (ionization). Electric fields then guide the ions into a vacuum tube which separates them according to their weight, with the smaller molecules rising up the column faster than the larger molecules. This “time of flight” creates a series of peaks, which correspond with the different molecules contained in the organism from the sample. All of these peaks create spectra unique to that microorganism. By comparing the spectra to a vast comprehensive library owned by bioMérieux, the precise microorganism can be identified quickly and easily. VITEK MS PRIME has been designed to incorporate additional benefits to further enhance the use of the MALDI-TOF technology.

With 700,0002 deaths worldwide annually, antimicrobial resistance (AMR) is a global health priority. Antimicrobial Stewardship (AMS), a key part of the arsenal to fight resistance, starts with diagnostics. VITEK MS PRIME positively impacts stewardship programs by providing even faster, highly accurate pathogen identification making excellent use of the large database of clinically relevant species to support earlier, targeted therapy.

“We had extensive input directly from labs as we developed VITEK MS PRIME,” said François Lacoste, Executive Vice President R&D. “The system incorporates numerous innovative features to make lab life easier, including improved automation and serviceability, with a robust database that is consistently expanding with new emerging pathogens and clinically relevant species. It integrates seamlessly with VITEK 2 for antimicrobial susceptibility testing and MYLA middleware for data integration and insights.”

“We are really pleased to bring this unique system to labs during the COVID-19 pandemic, when their needs for optimal workflow and efficiency are greater than ever,” said Pierre Boulud, Chief Operating Officer, Clinical Operations, “VITEK MS PRIME is a powerful innovation that reinforces our offer to support antimicrobial stewardship. Unique features like prioritization of urgent samples and continuous ‘load and go’ allow for greater efficiency and improved outcomes, which are also key in the fight against antimicrobial resistance.”

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