Danaher to Buy Cepheid

Danaher Corporation has signed a merger agreement to acquire Cepheid for approximately $4 billion. Cepheid is a global diagnostics company that develops, manufactures, and markets molecular systems and tests. In particular, it is known for its fully automated GeneXpert systems, which enable rapid genetic testing and provide test results for managing infectious diseases and other clinical applications. Based on its public disclosures, Cepheid generated annual revenues of $539 million in 2015, with double-digit year-on-year organic revenue growth and greater than 75% of these revenues considered recurring. Cepheid has also disclosed that in 2016 it expects to generate $618 to $635 million in revenues. Headquartered in Sunnyvale, California, Cepheid will become part of Danaher’s $5 billion diagnostics segment, joining the company’s Beckman Coulter, Leica Biosystems, and Radiometer businesses. Danaher believes that this will position Cepheid to improve operational efficiencies, significantly expand margins, and drive long-term growth.

“We expect Cepheid to be an excellent complement to our existing diagnostics businesses and to expand our runway for growth across the platform,” said Thomas P. Joyce, Jr., Danaher’s president and CEO. “Cepheid’s extensive installed base, test menu, and innovative product offering contribute to its market leadership in molecular diagnostics and we expect it to strengthen our position in this high-growth segment.”

The Boards of Directors of both companies have unanimously approved the acquisition, and the Cepheid Board of Directors has unanimously recommended that Cepheid shareholders approve the transaction. In addition to requiring approval by Cepheid’s shareholders, the offer is subject to other customary conditions such as regulatory approvals. The transaction is expected to be completed around the end of 2016.

Quest, Optum Join Forces to Improve the Consumer Healthcare Experience

Quest Diagnostics is partnering with Optum, an information technology health services business. Through this collaboration, Quest’s revenue services operations will become part of Optum360, a revenue management solution for healthcare providers. These operations, including approximately 2,400 Quest employees, will move to Optum360 and continue to support Quest customers. Quest hopes that this will reduce the cost and complexity of its billing processes.

Quest and Optum will also work together on data analytics, population health insights, and connectivity solutions, to help manage healthcare costs and effectiveness for health plans and care providers. Quest will also become Optum’s primary partner for member biometric screening services that Optum provides to employers and health plans.

“This partnership expands on Optum’s commitment to bring uniquely effective solutions to all segments of the healthcare marketplace and collaborate in ways that ultimately deliver better experiences and care for patients,” said Larry Renfro, CEO of Optum.

Transgenomic to Share Genomic Data With Roche Subsidiary Ventana

Transgenomic has inked a data sharing agreement with Ventana Medical Systems, a subsidiary of Roche. The agreement allows Ventana to access DNA test results from an existing research collaboration between Transgenomic and the University of Melbourne in Australia, under the terms of which the University of Melbourne is conducting additional clinical validation studies of Transgenomic’s Multiplexed Ice Cold-PCR (MX-ICP) technology. The researchers are using DNA isolated from pre-treatment tumor biopsies from patients enrolled in clinical trials. By comparing next-generation sequencing (NGS) and MX-ICP analyses of these samples, they aim to determine the prevalence and clinical significance of ultra-low frequency mutations that would otherwise go undetected by NGS or Sanger sequencing methodologies.

“We expect that the results of our collaboration with Melbourne University could significantly contribute to knowledge about the genetics of patient response to targeted cancer therapies,” said Paul Kinnon, president and CEO of Transgenomic. “We therefore welcome the opportunity to share this data with Ventana and view this agreement as an acknowledgement of the high quality and value characterizing this DNA analysis.”

GenomeDx Grants Several Leading Cancer Centers Access to Its Genomics Database

GenomeDx Biosciences has expanded access to its Decipher Genomics Resource Information Database (Decipher GRID) to a new group of leading cancer centers. Decipher GRID is a cloud-based genomic expression database that provides participating partners with access to genomic information of patients diagnosed with and treated for urological cancer. The new centers to join the Decipher GRID network include the Glickman Urological and Kidney Institute at Cleveland Clinic, Tulane Cancer Center, Chesapeake Urology, University of Michigan Cancer Center, University of Maryland Medical Center, and Rush University Medical Center. “Having access to this database will help us to compare genomic data among patients and will help researchers and clinicians share insights, data, and research opportunities that ultimately will benefit our patients during their fight against cancer,” said Leslie Deane, MD, associate professor of urology at Rush.

To date, Decipher GRID has served as the foundation of more than 45 clinical studies relating to GenomeDx’s Decipher Prostate Cancer Classifier products. These studies have been published in collaboration with researchers from more than 55 cancer centers in the U.S.

Nova Biomedical Launches New Subsidiary in Brazil

Nova Biomedical has opened a new sales, service, manufacturing, and distribution subsidiary in Brazil. With this new facility, Nova hopes to demonstrate its commitment to the Brazilian market and support the growth of in vitro diagnostic testing in Brazil and other member countries of the Mercosur trading bloc. Located in the town of Nova Lima, Nova’s new subsidiary will bring to Brazil the State Profile Prime line of whole blood analyzers for hospital and point-of-care (POC) use. This product line includes the Critical Care System, Electrolyte System, and Prime Plus. The new subsidiary will also manufacture and distribute the StatStrip and StatSensor lines of handheld, POC meter and test strip analyzers, which provide rapid glucose/ketone, lactate, and creatinine results at the bedside. “We at Nova Biomedical are excited to welcome our new Brazilian subsidiary to our international team and for the opportunity to continue to bring Nova’s in vitro diagnostic testing technology to this important global market,” said Ken Lumm, senior director of international sales at Nova.

Instrumentation Laboratory Acquires Swiss Company With Focus on ROTEM Testing

Instrumentation Laboratory (IL) has bought the Basel, Switzerland-based company CA Casyso and its Tem subsidiaries, which specialize in diagnostic testing for patient blood management (PBM) with their flagship rotational thromboelastometry (ROTEM) testing systems. Tem’s offerings will complement IL’s hemostasis and critical care product line in viscoelastic testing. With a direct sales force in seven markets, including the U.S., Tem has consistently achieved above-market growth in the PBM market, according to IL. Its ROTEM systems include ROTEM Delta and ROTEM Sigma for whole blood testing in satellite and central laboratories. ROTEM Delta is a semi-automatic device that provides a qualitative and quantitative indication of the coagulation state of a blood sample by measuring clot-firmness changes, and provides five different ROTEM assays for use in clinicians’ differential diagnoses. As for the ROTEM Sigma systems, they fully automate testing with a single cartridge that allows closed-tube sampling, with no pipetting or manual reagent handling.