Pharma Focus Asia
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BGI Genomics Launches First Clinical Laboratory in Uruguay, Spearheading Innovation

Monday, April 22, 2024

BGI Genomics, a renowned leader in precision medicine solutions, has launched a cutting-edge clinical laboratory in Uruguay's Parque de las Ciencias free trade zone. This move is poised to advance preventive healthcare throughout Latin America, employing state-of-the-art technology for early disease detection.

The opening ceremony saw the presence of notable figures including Omar Paganini, Minister of Foreign Affairs; Elisa Facio, Minister of Industry, Energy, and Mining; and Karina Rando, Minister of Public Health, alongside other national and departmental dignitaries. Dr. Yin Ye, CEO of BGI Group, the parent company of BGI Genomics, also attended. Minister Rando had previously visited the site in August 2023, and Minister Facio had met with Dr. Yin Ye in China in November 2023.

This groundbreaking laboratory, spanning 1,000 square meters, is solely dedicated to BGI Genomics' operations, specializing in precision medicine applications. It features a Huo-Yan Air Laboratory equipped with seven cabins, covering the entire genetic testing process. Notable features include an advanced HVAC system and design elements to prevent contamination between cabins.

The current workforce comprises Uruguayan technicians specializing in biochemistry and biotechnology, supplemented by application experts from China who provide training on the latest technologies.

A key achievement of BGI Genomics is the development of Next-Generation Sequencing (NGS) technology, aimed at enhancing accessibility and affordability of genetic testing across Latin America.

Elisa Facio, Minister of Industry, Energy, and Mining, expressed excitement about Uruguay's potential in the biotechnology sector, with the launch of BGI Genomics' laboratory being a significant step forward.

Natalia Pereiras, laboratory director, highlighted the goal of making advanced diagnostic tools accessible at an affordable cost, achieved through in-house product and methodology development.

Wu Liang, general manager for Latin America at BGI Genomics, emphasized Uruguay's strategic advantages, leveraging its proximity to Carrasco Airport and the benefits of operating within a free trade zone.

BGI Genomics' extensive oncology portfolio includes COLOTECT, a Real-Time PCR-based product for detecting colorectal cancer. Additionally, the SENTIS portfolio aids clinicians in selecting optimal treatments for cancer patients.

Reproductive health is another focus area, with products like NIFTY offering prenatal screening from the tenth week of gestation, providing crucial insights into chromosomal abnormalities and disorders. NIFTY Pro enhances screening capabilities, detecting a broader range of conditions including DiGeorge syndrome.



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