OpGen Subsidiary Ares Genetics Announces its Move to New Vienna Location and Provides Update on Business Growth

  • Approximately 5,000 sq. ft. facility houses laboratory and administrative operations under one location for future growth of business
  • ARESdb, the company’s AMR knowledge database, has grown by 28% in Q1-2023 with now over 130,000 clinical isolates
  • Collaborations with several U.S. state reference labs and European national reference labs are helping grow the unique database asset and improve predictive AI models
  • OpGen’s U.S. service lab completes sequencing of isolates from OpGen’s large clinical study on UTIs and scales up in preparation of commercial service projects

ROCKVILLE, Md., March 01, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- OpGen, Inc. (Nasdaq: OPGN, “OpGen”), a precision medicine company harnessing the power of molecular diagnostics and informatics to help combat infectious disease, and its subsidiary, Ares Genetics (Ares), which strives to become a leader in bacterial genomics and AI-powered prediction of antimicrobial resistance (AMR), today announced completion of its move from the incubator space at the Vienna Bio Center into a brand new and tailored state of the art facility at the Abundance Gate in Vienna, Austria. Ares Genetics will utilize approximately 5,000 square feet of dedicated laboratory and bioinformatics office space that has been built out to its specifications, bringing our Austrian operations under one roof for the first time since its inception in 2017.

“The move is one of several milestones that will help support our further growth plans for the product and NGS service business,” says Dr. Arne Materna, CEO of Ares. “With recent significant growth in our ARESdb database asset from 102,000 datasets to over 130,000 datasets in Q1 of this year alone, we believe we are well positioned to continue executing on our plans to expand and improve our menu of accurate AI models to predict antibiotic susceptibility from genomic data for a comprehensive range of drug pathogen combinations.”

The expansion of ARESdb content is driven by existing and new partnerships with a European national reference lab and two state public health labs in the U.S., and by Ares’ state of the art curation process selectively incorporating high quality data from public sources into ARESdb. An additional 2,100 isolates collected during OpGen’s Unyvero UTI urinary tract infection clinical trial and the collaboration with a major U.S. CLIA lab are scheduled to enrich the proprietary contents of ARESdb in the coming weeks.

After optimizing and scaling up the validated workflow for isolate sequencing (ARESiss) launched last year for U.S customers in the NGS service lab in Rockville, Maryland, the OpGen and Ares teams have now successfully completed the next generation sequencing of clinical isolates collected during the Unyvero UTI trial, which we believe demonstrates the lab’s capability to deliver quality at scale as required for larger, commercial customer projects.

Theo deVos, SVP Corporate Development and Operations for Ares in the U.S. commented, “Based on the progress we have made on the laboratory side here in the U.S. as well as with our unique ARESdb data asset, we have started processing samples under commercial contracts. Further to the UTI study isolate sequencing, a first smaller commercial project has already been completed at the Rockville lab, and we are set up for a larger customer pilot project that we expect to start in the coming weeks, thereby we anticipate beginning to generate Ares related service revenue and intend to grow our commercial footprint in the U.S.”

It is becoming well recognized that traditional methods of infection prevention for detection of healthcare-associated outbreaks deploy a reactive approach that frequently misidentifies and misses transmissions. Whole genome sequencing (WGS) surveillance provides high resolution data that enables rapid and targeted outbreak containment. The recent webinar presented on February 28, 2023 by Alexander Sundermann, Assistant Professor of Infectious Diseases at the University of Pittsburgh, delivered compelling data on the utility of WGS surveillance and its benefits for patient care and hospital cost savings. We are focused on addressing this market through our ARESiss WGS service labs in the US and Austria, and the AREScloud sequence analysis software with reporting tailored for genomic surveillance.

About OpGen, Inc.

OpGen, Inc. (Rockville, Md., U.S.A.) is a precision medicine company harnessing the power of molecular diagnostics and bioinformatics to help combat infectious disease. Along with our subsidiaries, Curetis GmbH and Ares Genetics GmbH, we are developing and commercializing molecular microbiology solutions helping to guide clinicians with more rapid and actionable information about life threatening infections to improve patient outcomes, and decrease the spread of infections caused by multidrug-resistant microorganisms, or MDROs. OpGen’s current product portfolio includes Unyvero, Acuitas AMR Gene Panel, and the ARES Technology Platform including ARESdb, NGS technology and AI-powered bioinformatics solutions for antibiotic response prediction including ARESiss, ARESid, and AREScloud, as well as the Curetis CE-IVD-marked PCR-based SARS-CoV-2 test kit.

For more information, please visit www.opgen.com.

Forward-Looking Statements

This press release includes statements regarding the move of Ares Genetics to the new Abundance Gate facility and the growth of its ARESdb database and related service offerings. These statements and other statements regarding OpGen’s future plans and goals constitute "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 and are intended to qualify for the safe harbor from liability established by the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Such statements are subject to risks and uncertainties that are often difficult to predict, are beyond our control, and which may cause results to differ materially from expectations. Factors that could cause our results to differ materially from those described include, but are not limited to, the success of our commercialization efforts, our ability to successfully, timely and cost-effectively develop, seek and obtain regulatory clearance for and commercialize our product and services offerings, the rate of adoption of our products and services by hospitals and other healthcare providers, the fact that we may not effectively use proceeds from recent financings, the continued realization of expected benefits of our business combination transaction with Curetis GmbH, the continued impact of COVID-19 on the Company’s operations, financial results, and commercialization efforts as well as on capital markets and general economic conditions, our ability to satisfy debt obligations under our loan with the European Investment Bank, the effect of the military action in Russia and Ukraine on our distributors, collaborators and service providers, our liquidity and working capital requirements, the effect on our business of existing and new regulatory requirements, our ability to realize any anticipated benefits from the reverse stock split, including maintaining its listing on the Nasdaq Capital Market and attracting new investors, and other economic and competitive factors. For a discussion of the most significant risks and uncertainties associated with OpGen's business, please review our filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. You are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which are based on our expectations as of the date of this press release and speak only as of the date of this press release. We undertake no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statement, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.

Oliver Schacht
President and CEO

OpGen Investor & Press Contact:
Alyssa Factor
Edison Group