San Diego-based Critical Diagnostics is expanding its presence in the Asia Pacific region by adding two distribution partners.

The company, which develops novel biomarkers to help physicians optimize patient care in cardiovascular diseases, selected Wan King International as the exclusive distributor in Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos. The distributor is based in Ho Chi Minh City. Critical Diagnostics says its Presage ST2, which measures the level of ST2 in the blood and is used for the diagnosis and prognosis of cardiovascular disease, significantly enhances Wan King’s current cardiac product portfolio.

Additionally, Critical Diagnostics selected cardiovascular medicine supply company Xovic to act as exclusive distributor in Thailand. Presage ST2 provides an opportunity for Xovic to expand into the fast-growing Thailand in vitro diagnostic market.

John Butterfield, vice president of business development for Critical Diagnostics in Asia Pacific, said the company now has distribution agreements in place for its Presage ST2 assay in 17 Asia Pacific countries.

David Geliebter, chairman and CEO of Critical Diagnostics, said ST2 will help change the practice of managing heart failure patients.

“As the world’s population grows, so will the rate of heart disease,” Geliebter said. “The number of people 60 or older is expected to double by 2025 and to triple by 2050 globally. The proportion of this aged population is likely to increase more in the Asian-Pacific region; thus, half of the world’s cardiovascular burden is predicted to occur in this area.”