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HIV/AIDS News Bradford McIntyre

bioLytical Laboratories: Groundbreaking HIV/AIDS Public Awareness and Mobile Testing Campaign Will Visit Toronto and Montreal

Nov. 7, 2007 - VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA - bioLytical Laboratories Inc. (bioLytical) today announced the Test Your Commitment (TYC) campaign will visit Montreal November 28-29 and Toronto December 6-7. The campaign is presented by bioLytical Laboratories with the support of Virgin Mobile Canada and the endorsement of UNICEF Canada. TYC aims to bring increased awareness to HIV and AIDS and the importance of being tested.

The TYC campaign will include public testing demonstrations of local personalities, celebrities and VIPs with INSTI(TM), a unique diagnostic kit that delivers HIV results in 60-seconds. Manufactured by bioLytical Laboratories, INSTI(TM) is by far the fastest HIV diagnostic kit in the world and the only one approved by Health Canada for point-of-care testing.

This revolutionary public awareness and mobile testing campaign endeavours to provide the public with access to new testing information and the opportunity to network with health care professionals and HIV/AIDS community groups. TYC offers an open forum to discuss issues regarding HIV testing and the need to reduce the stigma of those living with HIV or AIDS.

The campaign launched in Vancouver this past August and was a tremendous success attracting hundreds of people. "For the first time in Canada, the public at large had the ability to witness live testimonials and see first hand just how quick and easy it is to be tested for HIV in order to protect themselves and the ones they love," stated Matthew Clayton, bioLytical Executive Vice President.

In June, Ontario was the first provincial government in Canada to launch an HIV testing program and more than 50 of their Anonymous Testing sites now carry INSTI(TM). In September, Manitoba also increased accessibility to HIV testing for its residents. "We applaud both of these provinces in their progressive HIV awareness and testing programs and we hope through our cross Canada visits with TYC, other provinces will recognize the importance of expanding their HIV testing programs," comments Carl Roy, bioLytical, Chief Executive Officer. "Simple, unobstructed access to rapid HIV testing is a crucial first step in reducing the spread of the disease."

Together, bioLytical, Virgin Mobile Canada and UNICEF Canada have a shared goal of bringing needed attention to the growing HIV and AIDS crisis at home and abroad. New high-risk groups have emerged worldwide. In 2006, women accounted for 48% of all adults living with HIV worldwide. More than 2.3 million children under the age of 15 are living with HIV and there are currently 15 million children who have been orphaned by AIDS. Young people (under 25 years old) account for half of all new HIV infections worldwide with more than 6,000 becoming infected with HIV every day.

"Globally the Virgin group of companies recognize their responsibility to take part in local efforts to help defeat the worldwide HIV and AIDS epidemic," says Nathan Rosenberg, Chief Marketing Officer, Virgin Mobile Canada. "Supporting the TYC initiative allows Virgin Mobile Canada to actively participate in a non-conventional campaign that makes it a priority to educate young Canadians on the importance and ease of HIV testing."

"UNICEF Canada is pleased to be associated with bioLytical's Test Your Commitment mobile testing unit in order to raise awareness of the importance of HIV testing around the world. Young people, pregnant women and children born to HIV-positive mothers all have the right to know their status, but face numerous issues. Overcoming issues of stigma and providing easier access to rapid and accurate testing are critical in our work to protect children from the direct and indirect impact of HIV and AIDS on their lives," said Nigel Fisher, President and CEO, UNICEF Canada.

The campaign will visit the cities at the following times and locations:

Montreal: Nov. 28, 4 pm - 10 pm Bell Centre, 1047 de la Montagne
                 Nov. 29, 9 am - 4 pm 3535 Boulevard St. Laurent

Toronto: Dec. 6, 9 am - 4 pm Dundas Square at Younge and Dundas
                Dec. 7, 12 pm - 7 pm Dundas Square at Younge and Dundas

ABOUT INSTI HIV-1 RAPID ANTIBODY TEST
The INSTI HIV-1 Rapid Antibody Test is a rapid, in-vitro, qualitative test for the detection of antibodies to Human Immunodeficiency Virus Type 1 in human whole blood, serum or plasma. The test is capable of providing results in 60-seconds and is intended for use as a screening assay by trained personnel in medical facilities, clinical laboratories, emergency care situations, and physicians' offices.

ABOUT BIOLYTICAL LABORATORIES
bioLytical Laboratories (Inc.) is a leading developer and manufacturer of diagnostic tests for global health care markets. bioLytical is a privately owned company with headquarters and a state-of-the-art manufacturing facility located in Richmond, British Columbia, with offices in United Kingdom and Uganda, Africa. For more information about bioLytical and INSTI, please visit www.biolytical.com/.

About Virgin Mobile Canada
Launched in 2005, Virgin Mobile is Canada's first wireless service created for and defined by youth. The country's first mobile virtual network operator (MVNO), Virgin Mobile has a portfolio that includes monthly price plans, a full range of phones and a broad array of messaging, music and mobile content offerings. J.D. Power and Associates has recognized Virgin Mobile as highest in customer satisfaction with prepaid wireless service for two years in a row.

The Virgin Mobile group of companies has attracted over 10 million customers worldwide. Virgin Mobile phones are available at more than 4,000 locations with top-up cards available at more than 10,000 locations nationally. Virgin Mobile products can also be purchased online at http://www.virginmobile.ca or by calling 877-662-2824.

The Virgin Group recognises the many opportunities it has for tackling HIV and AIDS as well as its responsibility to take part in the effort to deal with the epidemic. For this reason Virgin is committed to the 0% Challenge. The 0% Challenge is Virgin's global staff-wide effort to help ensure that no Virgin employee dies needlessly of AIDS.

Through Virgin Unite, Virgin invests in programmes that include prevention, treatment and care and non-discrimination as well as supporting action in the local community. For more information visit www.virginunite.com.

About UNICEF International's Unite for Children, Unite against AIDS

Launched in 2006, UNICEF International's Unite for Children, Unite against AIDS campaign is the largest campaign ever mounted to bring the world's attention to the global impact of HIV and AIDS on children and young people and to substantially increase funding for programmes to protect and help affected children. The campaign is an intensification and acceleration of its on-going programs and efforts to get children and youth the protection and support they need at local, national and international levels.

Time to draw the Line is a monthly giving programme that allows Canadians to become part of an international movement that provides funding and support to UNICEF's Unite for Children, Unite against AIDS campaign.

UNICEF Canada's five-year campaign goal is to raise $25 million from Canadians to fund projects in priority countries in Africa, Asia, Eastern Europe, Latin America and the Caribbean.

www.uniteforchildren.org

www.timetodrawtheline.org/ca

END


CONTACT INFORMATION:

Smith Biotech
Amanda Smith, BSc.
Media Contact
(778) 846-4116
Email: amanda@smithbiotech.com
Website: www.biolytical.com

or

Virgin Mobile Canada
Chris Baines
Media Contact
(647) 378-8859 or (416) 607-8412
Email: chris.baines@virginmobile.ca
Website: www.virginmobile.ca

or

UNICEF
Canada Karen Snider
Media Contact
(416) 482-4444 ext.831
Email:ksnider@unicef.ca



"Reproduced with permission - bioLytical Laboratories"

bioLytical Laboratories
www.bioLytical.com


 

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