Based in Norcross, GA, Immucor, Inc. plays a vital role in making blood transfusions safe. We sell a complete line of automated instrument-reagents systems that detect and identify certain properties of blood prior to transfusion. Our strategy is to drive automation in the blood bank. We began our automation strategy in 1998 and have continually invested in automation since then. We have a full line of fully automated instruments to meet the needs of our customers: hospital transfusion centers, blood donor centers, and large clinical laboratories.
Established in 1982, Immucor has a history of innovating to improve transfusion medicine. Our patented Capture technology received its first license in 1986. This solid phase technology performs antibody screening and identification assays, providing an easy-to-use, standardized test method with improved sensitivity. In addition to manual testing benefits, this microplate-based technology is ideally suited for automated platforms.
Immucor began revolutionizing the blood bank industry through the introduction of automation in 1998 with the first FDA-cleared instrument for full automation of blood typing and antibody screening assays, the ABS2000. Immucor's second generation instrument, the Galileo, was launched in Europe in 2002 and received FDA clearance to market in the U.S. on April 26, 2004. The Galileo is a high volume instrument targeted at large hospitals, donor centers and reference laboratories.
Immucor's third generation automated instrument, the Galileo Echo, was launched worldwide in June 2007, after it was cleared for marketing in the U.S. by the FDA on June 14, 2007. The Echo is targeted at small- to medium- sized hospitals, the segment of the market that is the least automated, particularly in the U.S.
We continue to invest in automation and we are currently marketing our fourth generation automated instrument, the NEO, our latest high volume instrument.
In August 2008, we invested in what we believe will be the future of transfusion medicine - molecular immunohematology - with our acquisition of BioArray Solutions. BioArray pioneered the development of DNA typing of blood for transfusion. With the goal of improving transfusion medicine, we believe that molecular immunohematology will revolutionize the industry. We are currently developing a next generation automated instrument for our molecular offering, which will allow us to further commercialize this exciting technology.
We believe that automation is the key to improving blood bank operations and patient safety as well as increasing our market share around the world. Our automation strategy is fundamental to our approach to transfusion medicine. We are committed to ensuring that our automation strategy benefits our customers, employees, shareholders and, ultimately, patients.