American Association for Clinical Chemistry
Better health through laboratory medicine
May 2011 Clinical Laboratory News: Industry Profiles

Quest Diagnostics to Purchase Celera

Quest Diagnostics announced it will acquire Celera Corporation for $344 million. The deal gives Quest access to proprietary genetic tests and a research and development pipeline concentrated on cardiovascular disease, including Berkeley Heart Lab. “For Quest Diagnostics, this is an important transaction that will further strengthen our leadership position in molecular diagnostics discovery and development and drive sustainable revenue growth,” said Surya Mohapatra, chairman and CEO of Quest.

Roche Acquires PVT to Boost Laboratory Automation Product Line

Roche has announced the acquisition of PVT Probenverteiltechnik GmbH based in Waiblingen, Germany and PVT Lab Systems, LLC based in Atlanta, Ga. The acquisition is intended to increase Roche’s lab automation product portfolio of instruments for pre- and post-analytical tasks such as centrifuging, pipetting, sorting, and archiving across a wide variety of sample formats. “With PVT’s technology we will be able to deliver integrated and highly-efficient automation solutions to meet the evolving needs of our customers and further strengthen our leading position in the clinical diagnostics market,” said Daniel O’Day, COO of Roche Diagnostics.

Ariad, MolecularMD Team Up on Companion Dx for T315I Mutation

Ariad Pharmaceuticals Inc. and MolecularMD Corp. have inked a deal in which MolecularMD will develop and commercialize a companion diagnostic test to identify the T315I mutation of the BCR-ABL gene in patients with chronic myeloid leukemia (CML) and Philadelphia positive (Ph+) acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL). As part of this partnership, MolecularMD will enhance its currently available sequencing test and will submit a premarket approval application to the FDA. 

Quanta and IDT Ink microRNA Assays Agreement

Quanta BioSciences has announced it will collaborate with Integrated DNA Technologies (IDT) to develop and produce assays for quantifying microRNAs. The assays are designed to detect and profile mature miRNA sequences. Under the terms of the deal, IDT will produce the assays and market them through an online catalog directly to customers of Quanta.

Med BioGene Accepts Precision Therapeutics’ Offer for LungExpress Dx

Med BioGene has accepted an offer from Precision Therapeutics to license exclusive rights to Med BioGene’s LungExpress Dx assay. The new agreement, which boosts the original licensing agreement signed by the two firms in February, would grant Precision Therapeutics exclusive global rights to the gene expression-based test. The LungExpress Dx assay identifies patients with early-stage non-small-cell lung cancer who, following surgical removal of their tumor, are at variable risk of mortality. The technology is at the center of a lawsuit filed in February by Signal Genetics accusing Med BioGene with fraud and Precision Therapeutics with tortious interference. Signal Genetics claimed it had been negotiating a licensing agreement for LungExpress Dx with Med BioGene before the firm licensed rights to Precision Therapeutics.

Definiens and Cernostics Collaborate on Cancer Dx Tests

Definiens and Cernostics have joined forces to develop a multiplexed test that can diagnose cancer by looking at specific panels of biomarkers. According to Cernostics, these tests will help clinicians better understand disease subtypes and help them choose the course of treatment most suited to each patient’s disease state.