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New Automated Zone Analysis System Helps Speed up the Quality Testing of Antibiotics

BR79 ProtoCOL pharma.jpgCambridge, UK: Synbiosis, a world-leading manufacturer of automated microbiological systems, is pleased to announce its new ProtoCOL 2 automated zone measuring system now offers unique functionality for analysing antibiotic susceptibility testing plates. This can help improve quality testing and speed up the release of new antibiotics, thus reducing the spread of drug resistance.

Using the innovative ergonomically designed ProtoCOL 2 permits precise measurement of inhibition zones on antibiotic susceptibility testing plates (resolution >0.05mm from disc or well’s edge), even if the zone’s edge is indistinct or if the majority of the plate has been cleared by the antibiotic being tested.

ProtoCOL 2 features integrated sliding doors to eliminate ambient light effects and its unique LED lighting (patent pending) provides exceptional uniform illumination of antibiotic susceptibility testing plates. The system contains a high-resolution CCD camera that automatically generates highly defined zone images in seconds. The new impressive Zone software will assess not just two, but multiple points from the zone to rapidly calculate an average diameter, saving valuable analysis time. The software will also measure and subtract disc and well sizes, making the ProtoCOL 2 the most accurate system currently available for determining an antibiotic’s efficacy.

The results generated can be automatically transferred into statistical analysis software or archived where a batch number and antibiotic name can be entered. An image library is also created permitting scientists to see antibiotic susceptibility testing plates if there is a query after disposal. Producing data and image files ensure it is simple to locate vital information or generate professional reports when regulatory authorities request them. The capabilities of the software can also be integrated into a 21CFR Part 11 environment and means ProtoCOL 2 is suitable for use in any GMP antibiotic production facility or clinical microbiology laboratory.

Martin Smith of Synbiosis stated: “There is an urgent need for new, effective antibiotic drugs. The fast and accurate testing of an antibiotic’s efficacy is extremely important, as many antibiotics have to be used within two years of manufacture.”
Martin Smith continued: “We are delighted to respond to this need by introducing the new ProtoCOL 2, which with its excellent inhibition zone measurement features allows scientists to precisely determine an antibiotic’s potency in seconds. Using a ProtoCOL 2 system ensures antibiotics can be released rapidly, resulting in reduced costs of storing them and the antibiotics having a longer shelf-life at the pharmacy.”

For further information Contact:Jayne Arthur, Synbiosis, Beacon House, Nuffield Road, Cambridge, CB4 1TF, UK.
Tel: +44(0) 1223-727125 Fax +44 (0) 1223-727101 Email: Web site:

About Synbiosis

Synbiosis is a world-leading supplier of integrated imaging solutions for automatic counting and analysis of microbial colonies and zone measurement. The ProtoCOL 2 and åCOLyte systems from Synbiosis are installed in food, pharmaceutical, environmental and research microbiology laboratories world-wide. Synbiosis uses established distribution channels to market its products internationally.

Synbiosis, founded in 1998 is a division of the Synoptics Group based in Cambridge UK. The Group’s other divisions, Syncroscopy and Syngene, specialise in digital imaging solutions for microscopy and molecular biology applications respectively. Synoptics currently employs 40 people in its UK and US subsidiary operation.

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