Freudenberg products support rapid testing in the fight against HIV in rural areas
Plymouth, MI − November 24, 2015 − Freudenberg Medical has developed specialty tubing for an inexpensive, portable mini-lab used for rapid HIV testing outside ofmedical facilities.
According to UN estimates, approximately 37 million people worldwide are HIV positive. The majority live in rural areas of Africa and Asia, where access to medical care is sparse. Nevertheless, prompt diagnosis is important to treat those affected and to effectively contain the further spread of the virus. With the help of a portable mini-lab or “lab on a chip”, medicallytrained personnel can go from village to village in affected areas and perform rapid testing for HIV. They do this by taking a blood sample from the fingertip and feeding it into the unit for analysis. The patient’s blood sample flows through a special tube developed by Freudenberg Medical.
“As with all of our products, we manufacture this tubing from a special high-quality medical-grade silicone. This material has extensive approvals for use in patient care,” explained Dr. Dieter Pfeifle, responsible for in vitro diagnostic applications at Freudenberg Medical Europe. “We set our own inner and outer tube diameter which goes beyond what is typical in the market. In this application, we also need to adhere to a very precise tube length.” To ensure optimal product quality, Freudenberg Medical has developed an automated cutting and inspection process. “Our strength lies in meeting specific customer requirements for particularly sensitive applications,” said Pfeifle.
The test indicates not only whether the AIDS virus is present in the blood, but also provides information on how far the immunodeficiency has progressed. Around 8 million units of the portable mini-lab are produced annually. “We are proud to be making a small contribution to the fight against HIV with our products,” Pfeifle commented.
About Freudenberg Medical
Freudenberg Medical, formerly Helix Medical and MedVenture, is a global partner for the design, development and manufacture of innovative medical device technologies. With 11 manufacturing operations worldwide, Freudenberg Medical offers a wide range of capabilities from high precision silicone and thermoplastic components and tubing to coating technology and solutions for minimally invasive and catheter-based devices.
About the Freudenberg Group
Freudenberg is a global technology group that strengthens its customers and society long-term through forward-looking innovations. Together with its partners, customers and research institutions, the Freudenberg Group develops leading-edge technologies and excellent products and services for more than 30 markets and for thousands of applications. Strength of innovation, strong customer orientation, diversity, and team spirit are the cornerstones of the Group. The 166- year-old company holds strong to its core values: a commitment to excellence, reliability and pro-active, responsible action. In 2014, the Freudenberg Group employed over 40,000 people in 60 countries worldwide and generated sales of more than $7 billion Euros. For more information, please visit www.freudenberg.com