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Gazelle’s new capability offers an advance in disease management; allows clinicians to monitor hydroxyurea therapy at point of care

PORTLAND, Ore. and MUMBAI, India, May 08, 2022 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Hemex Health, a Portland, Oregon-based health-tech startup, announced a significant enhancement to their Gazelle™ Hb Variant test, which allows for more precise measurements of Hb F, also known as fetal hemoglobin. The increased accuracy could be useful for monitoring hydroxyurea therapy in point-of-care settings.

The software upgrade comes just months after the company released an enhancement that allows its Hb Variant test to detect beta thalassemia disease and trait in addition to sickle cell disease (SCD) and trait.

“We are excited to make this announcement on World Thalassemia Day to help raise awareness for severe blood disorders,” said Patti White, CEO, Hemex Health. “Gazelle continues to deliver unprecedented capability to populations with a high prevalence of sickle cell and beta thalassemia. In addition to this Hb F measurement improvement, additional features are planned for Gazelle that will improve healthcare for sickle cell and beta thalassemia patients who have not had access to this level of testing.”

In a clinical study conducted at the pediatric SCD Clinic of Korle Bu Teaching Hospital in Accra, Ghana, Gazelle’s Hb F quantification results were within 4.5% of HPLC Hb F results (the gold standard) with a 95% confidence range. The results of this study will be presented at an international conference this June and will also be published in a peer-reviewed journal later this year.

Hydroxyurea has been used to treat adult sickle cell patients since the 1980s and was recently approved for children by the US FDA. According to the NIH’s National Library of Medicine journal, The drug has been shown to increase Hb F production in patients with the effect of fewer pain crises and hospital stays. Hydroxyurea usage is also starting in India, Africa, and the Middle East.

“Part of the monitoring protocol for patients on hydroxyurea involves tracking changes in Hb F levels over time,” said Dr. Catherine Segbefia, Korle Bu Teaching Hospital, Accra, Ghana. “Having this capability at the point of care with Gazelle’s Hb Variant test will allow greater access to this therapy especially for those living in remote areas.”

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A photo accompanying this announcement is available at https://www.globenewswire.com/NewsRoom/AttachmentNg/46f69377-116e-42c9-8a73-2688147b3a70

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