North Chicago-based Abbvie Inc. has extended the expiration date for exchange offers for notes issued by Allergan Inc, Allergan Finance LLC, Allergan Sales LLC and Allergan Funding SCS, from 5 p.m. EDT on May 1, 2020, to 5 p.m. EDT on May 8, 2020. The notes relate to Abbvie’s proposed acquisition of Allergan plc, of Dublin, Ireland.

Alphatec Holdings Inc., of Carlsbad, Calif., has terminated its Feb. 26, 2020, tender offer to purchase Eos Imaging SA, of Besançon, France, for up to $88 million, plus debt retirement of $33.9 million, due to uncertainties caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. In connection with the dissolution of the tender offer agreement, the company and Perceptive Credit Holdings III LP terminated the commitment letter for up to $160 million in secured debt financing, which was intended to retire Alphatec’s existing credit facilities and fund the cash needed to complete the acquisition of Eos.

Pittsburgh-based Carmell Therapeutics Corp. reported that the U.S. FDA has granted fast track designation for its first product, Bone Healing Acclerant (BHA), entitling the company to expedited review and more frequent meetings with FDA personnel. In December, the agency cleared the way for a pivotal study of BHA in long bone fractures to support a biologics license application.

Electrocore Inc., of Basking Ridge, N.J., said an investigator-initiated, randomized, controlled clinical trial has begun enrolling COVID-19 patients to Spain to assess the ability of noninvasive vagus nerve stimulation to decrease the number of hospitalized COVID-19 patients requiring use of a ventilator. The company also reported that a paper, “Use of Non-Invasive Vagus Nerve Stimulation to treat Respiratory Symptoms Associated with COVID-19: A Theoretical Hypothesis and Early Clinical Experience,” has been peer reviewed and accepted for publication in Neuromodulation: Technology at the Neural Interface.

London-based Erba Mannheim reported the release of its CE-marked Erbalisa COVID-19 ELISA kits for the detection of IgG and IgM antibodies to SARS-CoV-2. The company has applied to the U.S. FDA for emergency use authorization and expects U.S. clearance to follow soon.

San Diego-based Genalyte Inc. said its rapid COVID-19 serology panel is now available on its Maverick platform. The test detects IgG and IgM antibodies to the novel coronavirus, SARS-CoV-2.

Gilson Inc., of Middleton, Wis., and Hilden, Germany-based Qiagen NV, are partnering to make manual nucleic acid extraction more efficient and reproducible. The collaboration will integrate Gilson’s Trackman Connected digital bench tools with Qiagen’s manual nucleic acid extraction kits to establish consistency between collaborators, increase confidence in extraction protocols and improve traceability at the bench.

IBM, of Armonk, N.Y., unveiled IBM Rapid Supplier Connect, a blockchain-based network designed to help government agencies and health care organizations identify new, nontraditional suppliers that have pivoted to address the shortage of equipment, devices and supplies needed for COVID-19 relief efforts.

Menarini-Silicon Biosystems, which has a presence in Bologna, Italy, and Huntingdon Valley, Pa., said that it is exploring the possible use of its proprietary Cellsearch technology to study the progression of COVID-19 disease and potentially identify patients who may be at risk of developing the most severe complications of the disease.

Merck & Co. Inc., of Kenilworth, N.J., and Seattle’s Institute for Systems Biology reported a new research collaboration to investigate and define the molecular mechanisms of SARS-CoV-2 infection and COVID-19 and identify targets for medicines and vaccines. Merck has also entered into an agreement with the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority, for the latter to provide funding support for this research effort under Contract No. HHSO100201600031C. Findings generated from the study will be made available to the worldwide scientific and biomedical community.

Neve Ilan, Israel-based Nano-X Imaging Ltd. reported a partnership agreement with the Hadassah Hospital in Jerusalem, to use the Nanox ARC system on site for developing novel early detection and screening protocols to promote global preventive health care practices. The two parties signed the agreement in September 2019, and now formally begin the collaboration program.

Novacyt Group, of Vélizy-Villacoublay, France, signed a supply contract with the U.K. Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) for its COVID-19 polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test, developed by Primerdesign, the company’s U.K.-based molecular diagnostics division. Under the terms of the agreement, Novacyt will supply its test to the DHSC for an initial term of six months, as of May 4. Novacyt has committed to supply 288,000 tests per week to the DHSC for use in the NHS, with the option to expand the agreement.

Raritan, N.J.-based Ortho Clinical Diagnostics Inc. said the U.S. FDA had granted emergency use authorization for its second COVID-19 antibody test, the Vitros Immunodiagnostic Products Anti-SARS-CoV-2 IgG Test. The company also reported the launch of the test.

Synaptive Medical, a leader in robotic surgical and imaging technologies, announced today the company has established a partnership with O-Two Medical Technologies Inc., a world leader in controlled ventilation, for the production of O-Two’s e700 portable transport ventilator for patients impacted worldwide by COVID-19. As part of the agreement, Synaptive will leverage its expertise in developing a variety of potentially life-saving medical technologies to scale up O-Two’s production

No Comments