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Astrotech Appoints Thomas B. Pickens III as Chief Technology Officer

AUSTIN, TX, Feb. 06, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Astrotech Corporation (Nasdaq: ASTC) (the “Company” or “Astrotech”) announced today that its Board of Directors has appointed Thomas B. Pickens III to serve as its Chief Technology Officer (“CTO”) in conjunction with his current duties as Chief Executive Officer.

Tom Wilkinson, Astrotech’s lead independent director said, “The appointment of Tom Pickens as CTO more accurately reflects the dual roles he has been managing since the consolidation of our operations in Austin, Texas. He has consistently demonstrated his proficiency in identifying new applications for our Astrotech Mass Spectrometer Technology™ (the “AMS Technology”) and is key in the design of innovative sample collection and quantitation techniques.”  

In 2017, Mr. Pickens oversaw the Company’s evaluation of possibilities around a point-of-care mass-spec breath analysis device using the AMS Technology. Due to the worldwide effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Company formed BreathTech Corporation and began the commercialization of the BreathTest-1000™ COVID-19 rapid detection device. During the development of this product, Mr. Pickens has been a valued team member in the discovery and development of the method to detect the compounds associated with COVID-19 lung infections. Moreover, Mr. Pickens led the effort that found and hired Dr. Karim Sirgi, MD, MBA and FCAP as BreathTech’s Chief Science Officer. Dr. Sirgi is helping lead our clinical trial and in vivo sample collection efforts with Cleveland Clinic and Mountain View Clinical Research.

Mr. Pickens also leads the team that is developing applications for the AMS Technology in the distillation of essential oils using molecular distillation systems, including the manufacturing of hemp and cannabis oils. Mr. Pickens has been instrumental in our process to accurately qualify and quantify chemical compounds using our technology. To commercialize this application, Mr. Pickens brought to the team Joe Levinthal, a distillation veteran with extensive mass spectrometry experience, as the Chief Science Officer at AgLAB Inc.

“I continue to be passionate in commercializing our existing and new applications while working with an excellent team to maximize the Company’s value,” Mr. Pickens stated.

About Astrotech Corporation

Astrotech (Nasdaq: ASTC) is a mass spectrometry company that launches, manages, and commercializes scalable companies based on its innovative core technology through its wholly-owned subsidiaries. 1st Detect develops, manufactures, and sells trace detectors for use in the security and detection market. AgLAB is developing chemical analyzers for use in the agriculture market. BreathTech is developing a breath analysis tool to screen for volatile organic compound metabolites that that could indicate they may have a bacterial or viral infection. Astrotech is headquartered in Austin, Texas. For information, please visit

About the AgLAB-1000 and the BreathTest-1000

This press release contains information about our new products under development, AgLAB-1000 and BreathTest-1000. Product development involves a high degree of risk and uncertainty, and there can be no assurance that our new products will be successfully developed, achieve their intended benefits, receive full market authorization, or be commercially successful. In addition, FDA approval will be required to market BreathTest-1000 in the United States. Obtaining FDA approval is a complex and lengthy process, and there can be no assurance that FDA approval for BreathTest-1000 will be granted on a timely basis or at all. 

Forward-Looking Statements

This press release contains forward-looking statements that are made pursuant to the Safe Harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Such forward-looking statements are subject to risks, trends, and uncertainties that could cause actual results to be materially different from the forward-looking statement. These factors include, but are not limited to, the severity and duration of the COVID-19 pandemic and its impact on the U.S. and worldwide economy, the timing, scope and effect of further U.S. and international governmental, regulatory, fiscal, monetary and public health responses to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Companys use of proceeds from the common stock offerings, whether we can successfully complete the development of our new products and proprietary technologies, whether we can obtain the FDA and other regulatory approvals required to market our products under development in the United States or abroad, whether the market will accept our products and services and whether we are successful in identifying, completing and integrating acquisitions, as well as other risk factors and business considerations described in the Companys Securities and Exchange Commission filings including the Companys most recent Annual Report on Form 10-K. Any forward-looking statements in this document should be evaluated in light of these important risk factors. Although the Company believes the expectations reflected in its forward-looking statements are reasonable and are based on reasonable assumptions, no assurance can be given that these assumptions are accurate or that any of these expectations will be achieved (in full or at all) or will prove to have been correct. Moreover, such statements are subject to a number of assumptions, risks and uncertainties, many of which are beyond the control of the Company, which may cause actual results to differ materially from those implied or expressed by the forward-looking statements. In addition, any forward-looking statements included in this press release represent the Companys views only as of the date of its publication and should not be relied upon as representing its views as of any subsequent date. The Company assumes no obligation to correct or update these forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, except as required by applicable law.

Company Contact: Jaime Hinojosa, Chief Financial Officer, Astrotech Corporation, (512) 485-9530

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