Oasis Diagnostics Secures $1.3 Million in Phase II Funding from NIH for Its Rapid Saliva Test for Stress

August 22, 2013

Award of a $1.3 Million Dollar Grant for Saliva Stress Test Development

Vancouver, WA (PRWEB) August 13, 2013 — Oasis Diagnostics® Corporation, a leader in the development and commercialization of oral sample collection systems for nucleic acids, proteins and small molecules for laboratory and point-of-care applications, has secured Phase II Federal funding to complete the development of its rapid, fully quantitative stress test that detects levels of the hormone cortisol in saliva, in real time.

Funding for the project is provided by the National Institutes of Health’s National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM) under award number R44AT006634.

Under the terms of the grant, Oasis will immediately receive $733,850 as initial [Year 1] funding and a further $574,303 in year 2 of the two year program, subject to completion of certain goals during the first year. The development of the test will be carried out at Oasis’ own laboratory in Portland Oregon and in collaboration with the University of New Orleans and Middleton Research in Madison, WI.

The test is being developed on Oasis’ patented VerOFy® point-of-care platform technology that incorporates rapid and standardized saliva collection with high quality immunochromatographic test strips, providing a system for delivery of real time, quantitative results in the field or any convenient point-of-care testing situation, including low resource settings.

Oasis CEO Paul D. Slowey PhD, notes that “stress is a major concern for millions of Americans and a leading cause of morbidity and mortality in the US. Estimates of the economic toll of stress-related illnesses exceed $200 billion annually in the US. Stress exposure is a risk factor for a host of mental health and physical health problems such as sleep disorders, cardiovascular disease, gastro-intestinal problems, immune dysfunction and auto-immune problems, chronic pain, addiction and alcoholism. Cortisol is also directly linked to abnormalities in many normal physiological processes such as neural development and cell death, immune function, learning and memory, sleep, metabolism and fat distribution, growth and development, reproduction, and aging. Understanding how stress exposure ‘gets under the skin’ to influence such a wide variety of mental and physical health problems is of high importance to health professionals and researchers, consequently we believe the ability to detect elevated stress levels will become an increasingly important tool in the armory of physicians, researchers and major pharmaceutical companies developing stress relieving medications.”

“While we are focused on developing the VerOFy® salivary cortisol assay, we are looking at other hormones in saliva, particularly testosterone, through a grant provided to the University of New Orleans and Oasis and also estradiol, through a collaborative partnership with another Company. Longer term goals include development of an integrated method for measuring multiple salivary biomarkers in diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, tuberculosis and certain cancers in near real time and non-invasively using saliva rather than blood,” Slowey says.