First commercial customer

After many years of hard work, it’s fantastic to finally see ASTar being launched and to receive such a positive response

One of the early important milestones of the quarter was our first commercial sale to a hospital in England. The customer decided to purchase an ASTar system after the evaluation showed that patients benefited from rapid antibiotic susceptibility testing and ASTar’s unique advantages.

We are very pleased about the considerable interest we see from potential customers. After many years of hard work, it’s fantastic to finally see ASTar being launched and to receive such a positive response. However, we see that the sales cycles are long and comparable with other players in the market. At present, we estimate that the sale process of ASTar will take about 9 months and we will of course together with our partners investigate the possibilities of shortening these.

We also see that there are currently more customers who simultaneously, and in a short time, have shown interest in evaluating ASTar prior to their purchase, and that the capacity to perform commercial evaluations at our partner is a limiting factor. Seeing the great interest from potential customers is incredibly encouraging and we are now working closely with Thermo Fisher Scientific to adapt the resources to the required needs.

There are also some remaining negative effects of the corona pandemic, but this is improving daily, and we believe that it generally has a very small impact on sales.

Based on the above, we estimate that sales of ASTar systems for 2022 will amount to approximately 20 ASTar.

Another important news item from the quarter was ASTar’s designation as a breakthrough device by the FDA. This designation is given to products that are deemed to provide a more efficient treatment for serious illnesses where no comparable alternative is available in the market. The aim of the designation is to accelerate the regulatory review of new medical devices and provide patients with faster access to new treatment alternatives. Receiving breakthrough device designation from the FDA is itself a milestone, but we also see this prioritised regulatory review as an opportunity to bring ASTar to the US market more quickly. We are following our plan and intend to submit our 510(k) application in the spring.

Q-linea participated in ECCMID in Lisbon in April, hosting its own booth. ECCMID is the world’s largest infectious diseases conference, with over 10,000 participants. Qlinea demonstrated ASTar along with Podler and our new loading station for easy and cost-effective analysis of isolate samples in ASTar. We also demonstrated our upcoming panel for analysing Gram-positive bacteria and, as with our Gram-negative panel, we received a great deal of positive feedback about the breadth of the panel.

We are very pleased with all the feedback we have received on ASTar from potential customers. Podler generated considerable interest and received numerous comments and was considered a huge step for blood cultures. “Why hasn’t anyone done this before?” was a frequent comment.

Thermo Fisher Scientific experienced a similarly high level of interest when presenting ASTar and a great deal of demand for demonstrations. It is clear that we have reached all of the goals we set ahead of the conference, and it will be exciting to see how we and Thermo Fisher Scientific can follow up with interested potential customers during the coming months. We also received a great deal of interest in commercialising Podler from several parties.

All in all, the future looks bright given the significant customer interest we have attracted and I look forward to increased capacity to carry out evaluations and commercial sales at our partner. We are confident that ASTar will contribute to improved patient outcomes for as many patients as possible around the world.

Uppsala, 4 May 2022,

Jonas Jarvius, President