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Former Head of Food Safety at Chipotle Mexican Grills Joins LexaGene’s Scientific Advisory Board

BEVERLY, Mass., April 03, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- LexaGene Holdings Inc. (OTCQB: LXXGF; TSX-V: LXG) (the “Company”), a biotechnology company that develops genetic analyzers for pathogen detection and other molecular markers, is pleased to announce that food safety innovator Dr. James Marsden has joined LexaGene’s Scientific Advisory Board (SAB) to steer LexaGene’s penetration into the food industry.

Dr. Marsden, as a world-renowned food safety expert, served as an advisor to the White House on food safety and nutrition and has testified on numerous occasions to the United States Congress, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), and the US Department of Agriculture (USDA).  In 2016, Dr. Marsden was recruited by Chipotle to implement a best-in-class food safety program after several incidences marred the company.  Over the last three years, he worked tirelessly to make impactful changes and has helped rebuild Chipotle’s reputation.  With his recent retirement from Chipotle, Dr. Marsden has decided to join LexaGene’s team.  Moving forward, he will help LexaGene advance its goal of becoming the first provider of automated pathogen testing instruments for the food industry that utilize highly-multiplexed genetic tests which can return results in an hour rather than days.

Dr. Jack Regan, LexaGene’s founder and CEO, states, “Jim is widely regarded as an expert and pioneer in food safety.  Having his support behind LexaGene is exciting and will help ensure that our offering is the answer to the food industry’s unmet needs.  I look forward to working with Jim to establish key collaborations with major food processing companies to evaluate our technology and build demand for rapid market penetration.”

Dr. James Marsden served as the executive director of food safety at Chipotle where he was responsible for directing the food safety programs at Chipotle Mexican Grills, ShopHouse restaurants, and Pizzeria Locale.  He was recruited into the position to bring best practices in food safety to Chipotle and push suppliers to adopt stricter policies for food safety testing.  To Chipotle, he brought over forty years’ experience in the food industry working with government officials, regulators, food companies, trade associations, and academics.  He previously worked for several food companies and technology providers, and served as Vice President for Scientific Affairs at the American Meat Institute (AMI) and President of the AMI Foundation. Earlier in his career, he was a Professor at Kansas State University, and provided expert testimony in cases involving foodborne disease outbreaks from E. coli, Salmonella, Campylobacter, Listeria monocytogenes, and Norovirus.  

Upon being invited to join LexaGene’s SAB, Dr. Marsden stated, “The food industry has been looking for the right genomics-based technology to adopt to help make their products safer.  LexaGene’s technology has the speed, breadth of detection, sensitivity, and ease-of-use that the industry is demanding, and it is affordable enough for wide-spread adoption.  I look forward to the opportunity to help LexaGene make an impact on the market so that companies can deliver the freshest and safest foods possible to its customers.  LexaGene has an opportunity to set the standard for genomics-based pathogen detection in the food industry, and I look forward to helping them achieve this goal.”

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About LexaGene Holdings Inc.
LexaGene is a biotechnology company developing the very first fully automated pathogen detection platform that is open-access.  The open-access feature will empower end-users to target any pathogen of interest, as they can load their own real-time PCR assays onto the instrument for customized pathogen detection.  End-users simply need to collect a sample, load it onto the instrument with a sample preparation cartridge, and press ‘go’. The instrument is expected to offer excellent sensitivity, specificity, and breadth of pathogen detection.  The instrument will be able to process multiple samples at a time, in an on-demand fashion, returning results in about 1 hour.  The company expects to sell its technology in the veterinary diagnostics market, food safety market, and more.

Media Contacts
Nicole Ridgedale
Director of Corporate Marketing, LexaGene
800.215.1824 ext 206
nridgedale@lexagene.com

Investor Relations
Jay Adelaar
Vice President of Capital Markets, LexaGene
800.215.1824 ext 207
jadelaar@lexagene.com 

The TSX Venture Exchange Inc. has in no way passed upon the merits of the proposed transaction and has neither approved nor disapproved the contents of this press release. Neither TSX Venture Exchange nor its Regulation Services Provider (as that term is defined in the policies of the TSX Venture Exchange) accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release.

This news release contains forward-looking information, which involves known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause actual events to differ materially from current expectation. Important factors -- including the availability of funds, the results of financing efforts, the success of technology development efforts, the cost to procure critical parts, performance of the instrument, market acceptance of the technology, regulatory acceptance, and licensing issues -- that could cause actual results to differ materially from the Company's expectations as disclosed in the Company's documents filed from time to time on SEDAR (see www.sedar.com). Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date of this press release. The company disclaims any intention or obligation, except to the extent required by law, to update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.