Shipping of OraSure Commences in Argentina BEAVERTON, Ore., Sept. 10 /PRNewswire/ -- Epitope, Inc. (Nasdaq: EPTO) today announced a five-year exclusive distribution agreement with Altrix Healthcare plc., a UK based healthcare diagnostic service provider. Under the terms of the agreement, Altrix will be responsible for the marketing and sales of the OraSure oral fluid collection device to the life insurance, public health and laboratory markets in the UK and Ireland. The agreement requires Altrix to meet minimum sales goals in order to maintain this relationship. Initial orders have been shipped. If successful in the UK and Ireland, Altrix will have the option to market OraSure to other European community countries. John W. Morgan, Epitope's president and chief executive officer, commented, "We are excited about this agreement because it allows us to enter the European market with a partner who has strong relationships and excellent distribution capabilities." Paul Hunter, Altrix's managing director, commented, "Marketing OraSure in the UK and Ireland offers us a unique opportunity to expand in the growing area of non-invasive patient testing." Separately, Epitope noted that it had shipped initial orders in excess of $200,000 of its OraSure device to Argentina to use in testing for hepatitis. Based upon the success of a program initially implemented to test victims of severe flooding within the country, the Ministry of Health is currently reviewing the use of OraSure for testing of pregnant women for both HIV and hepatitis. A decision on this program is expected by the end of the fourth quarter 1998. Epitope, Inc. develops and markets medical diagnostic products. The company's principal products, including the OraSure oral specimen collection device, focus on the use of oral fluid to detect HIV infection and other conditions, and are marketed primarily in the life insurance and public health sectors. Statements in this press release about future sales levels or other future events or performance are forward-looking statements. The Company's actual results could be quite different. Factors that could affect results include the extent of future use of oral testing and OraSure in the insurance industry; ability of the company to develop product distribution channels; development of competing products; changes in federal or state law or regulations; and loss of key personnel. Although forward-looking statements help to provide complete information about the company, readers should keep in mind that forward-looking statements are much less reliable than historical information.
Source: EPITOPE Inc.
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