IRVINE, Calif., June 05, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Biomerica, Inc. (Nasdaq: BMRA) announced it has signed an exclusive sales and distribution agreement with MaxHealth for the sale of its EZ Detect product in China. The agreement requires MaxHealth to meet annual minimum purchase requirements, which in aggregate, equal $17 million over the initial seven year term and further requires an upfront pre-payment of $1 million after meeting certain conditions. As previously announced, the China Food and Drug Administration (CFDA) has already cleared Biomerica’s EZ Detect™ colorectal screening test for distribution in China.
Biomerica’s EZ Detect colorectal screening test is the simplest at home test to detect fecal occult (hidden) blood, an early warning sign of colorectal cancer. The test does not require handling of stool or dietary restrictions. The EZ Detect pad is dropped into the toilet after a bowel movement. A change in the pad’s color to blue, which would appear within two minutes, indicates the presence of blood in the stool and need for further medical attention. The pad is then simply flushed.
Colorectal cancer is most common in persons over the age of 50. China’s population is growing old at a faster rate than most other countries1. Sources estimate that over 400 million people are over the age of 50 in China2. With increasing incidence and cancer related mortality, cancer is the leading cause of death in China and is a major public health problem. About 376,000 new cases of colorectal cancer were reported annually in China according to a recent study and about 191,000 die from the disease every year3.
MaxHealth is a China based company that that specializes in the distribution of medical products and employs over 100 sales people. MaxHealth is the exclusive regional distributor for Olympus gastrointestinal endoscopy products giving MaxHealth access to hospitals, gastrointestinal (“GI”) physicians and related GI medical insititutions that could be important customers for the EZ Detect product. Maxhealth is running clinical studies for other new GI related products in China (non-competitive to EZ Detect) and has also made strategic investments in many of the companies it represents.
“Colorectal cancer is a leading cause of cancer death worldwide, and early detection is the key to saving lives in affected patients,” said Zack Irani, CEO of Biomerica. “Many patients don’t utilize colorectal cancer screening tests due to the requirement of handling stool. EZ Detect was preferred 9:1 by patients versus other tests, in a study at the Johns Hopkins University, since it does not require any handling of the stool. Further, in counties like China with socialized medicine, EZ Detect is the least expensive way to screen populations since there is no mailing of samples and no laboratory processing.”
1 China Power. February 15, 2016. Updated August 11, 2017
2 Knoema world data atlas
3 Chen et al., Cancer statistics in China, CA CANCER J CLIN 2016;66:115–132
About Biomerica (NASDAQ: BMRA)
Biomerica, Inc. (www.biomerica.com) is a global biomedical company that develops, manufactures and markets advanced diagnostic products used at the point-of-care (in home and in physicians' offices) and in hospital/clinical laboratories for the early detection of medical conditions and diseases. The Company's products are designed to enhance the health and well-being of people, while reducing total healthcare costs. Biomerica primarily focuses on products for Gastrointestinal Disease, Diabetes and esoteric testing.
The Biomerica InFoods® IBS product identifies patient specific foods that when removed may alleviate an individual's IBS symptoms. This patent-pending, diagnostic-guided therapy is designed to allow for a patient specific, guided dietary regimen to improve Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) outcomes. The point-of-care product is being developed to allow physicians to perform the test in-office using a finger stick blood sample while a clinical lab version of the product will be the first for which the company will seek regulatory approval. A billable CPT code that can be used by both clinical labs and physicians' offices is available for InFoods® diagnostic products. Since the InFoods® product is a diagnostic-guided therapy, and not a drug, it has no drug type side effects.
The Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 provides a "safe harbor" for forward-looking statements. Certain information included in this press release (as well as information included in oral statements or other written statements made or to be made by Biomerica) contains statements that are forward-looking; such as statements relating to intended launch dates, minimum purchases, sales potential, significant benefits, market size, prospects, new products, favorable outlook, new distributors, expansion, increases in productivity and margins, expected orders, leading market positions, anticipated future sales or production volume of the Company, the launch or success of product and new product offerings. Such forward-looking information involves important risks and uncertainties that could significantly affect anticipated results in the future, and accordingly, such results may differ materially from those expressed in any forward-looking statements made by or on behalf of Biomerica. The potential risks and uncertainties include, among others, fluctuations in the Company's operating results due to its business model and expansion plans, downturns in international and or national economies, the Company's ability to raise additional capital, the competitive environment in which the Company will be competing, and the Company's dependence on strategic relationships. The Company is under no obligation to update any forward-looking statements after the date of this release.
Zack Irani | CEO