"Our goal is to make this new technology as readily
accessible as buying an ice cream from the corner store"
-Pacific Edge managing director David Darling
Dunedin-based Pacific Edge is taking its bladder cancer
diagnostic technology directly to New Zealanders through the
launch of an e-commerce platform, which will become live in
about two weeks.
New Zealand residents will have the ability to order a urine
testing service online and samples will be analysed by
Pacific Edge Diagnostics, in Dunedin.
Pacific Edge managing director David Darling told the Otago
Daily Times New Zealanders would pay a rebated cost of $368
for a test, much lower than the cost of a test in the United
''We are providing this rebate because we are a New Zealand
company and have been supported by New Zealand people. We are
pleased to be able to offer the service directly to people
Asked if he was confident Pacific Edge could keep up with
demand if the online service took off in popularity, Dr
Darling said it would be a nice problem to have.
The Dunedin laboratory had the ability for 35,000 tests and
the capacity to triple-shift, if needed.
For every 1000 new tests, three new machines and two more
technicians would be needed.
If there was a potential jam, New Zealand tests could be sent
to the United States laboratory or US tests could be sent to
New Zealand, he said.
''It's nice to have the complementary accredited lab in the
In the past, people concerned they might have bladder cancer
could phone Pacific Edge and have a Cxbladder test kit sent
The ''Mad Butcher'' Sir Peter Leitch was a long-time client
who had expressed peace of mind thanks to being able to
repeatedly test for bladder cancer.
''He's been using our technology for two years. He phones up,
we send him the kit, he pees in the cup and sends it to the
lab. The results are sent straight to his urologist and if
there is a problem, it is immediately obvious. It provides
peace of mind for him,'' Dr Darling said.
The e-commerce site had been reviewed and approved by
Medsafe, the New Zealand Medicines and Medical Devices Safety
Authority, and TAPS, the Therapeutic Advertising Pre-vetting
System of the Advertising Standards Authority.
Craigs Investment Partners broker Chris Timms praised the
innovative thinking of Pacific Edge and hoped it would
encourage more men to use the bladder cancer tests.
''There is a bit of a stigma about men and their health. It
is a lot easier for them to use the technology at home than
fronting up to a doctor. The more people using the test, the
more normal it becomes.''
New Zealand was an ideal testing ground for online sales and
Pacific Edge could roll out the product in a cost-effective
If the tests proved successful in New Zealand, there was
potential to have online sales in other countries,
particularly in Asia, Mr Timms said.
Pacific Edge Diagnostics commercial director Brent Pownall
said the service would allow people with haematuria (blood in
their urine, one of the early indicators of possible bladder
cancer) a readily accessible and easy-to-use service.
Results would be provided to clients and their clinicians.
''This translates to a higher level of confidence in the
results, giving the patient greater peace of mind.''
Buyers of the urine testing service in New Zealand would be
sent the proprietary urine sampling system developed by
Pacific Edge to be used for collecting a urine sample for the
The test allowed buyers the convenience of collecting a
sample at home without needing to visit their doctor or
Dr Darling said many New Zealanders were aware the technology
was available to complement or provide an alternative to the
standard invasive tests but were not sure how to access the
Cxbladder service, other than through their doctor.
Now patients could test themselves regularly if they were
''Our goal is to make this new technology as readily
accessible as buying an ice cream from the corner store. This
will ensure the disease can be found early and that
clinicians will get to know very early on which patients are
Health statistics in New Zealand showed about 600 people a
year were diagnosed with bladder cancer and about 170 deaths
a year were attributed to the disease. Many more were
referred for urological examinations after a diagnosis of
On average, fewer than one in 10 of those suffering some form
of haematuria were likely to be diagnosed with bladder
cancer, Dr Darling said.
Pacific Edge continued its focus on driving revenue for its
urology-based technology Cxbladder in the the US and
achieving the company's target of sales revenue there of $100
million after five years of trading.