Materialise (Plymouth, Michigan), a provider of additive manufacturing software and 3-D printing solutions, reported a strategic partnership with Kapstone Medical (Charlotte, North Carolina), a product development and intellectual property service provider for medical device innovators. The new partnership will provide medical device companies and surgeon inventors a complete solution for bringing ideas to market from initial idea to product launch.

Materialise says it has been on the leading edge of 3-D printing and image-based software solutions with its Mimics Innovation Suite. In addition, its Anatomical Data Mining (ADaM) solution has been able to help orthopedic device manufacturers bring anatomical evidence into product development with validated, population-based average models derived from databases of imaging data.

Kapstone Medical is an end-to-end customized solutions provider dedicated to helping medical device innovators develop and safeguard their ideas. The company integrates a suite of disciplines to give physician inventors, entrepreneurs, and manufacturers of all sizes the opportunity to efficiently develop new ideas, on time and on budget.

"We are excited to join Kapstone Medical in a partnership that will help companies and inventors create a better and healthier world," said Bryan Crutchfield, Managing Director of Materialise.

In the past year, Materialise and Kapstone have partnered to support Shoulder Options in the concept design for a novel reconstructive device. By combining Materialise's population analysis service and Kapstone's broad expertise in product development and commercialization, the two companies were able to assist Shoulder Options in successfully designing a next generation, anatomical implant system, the companies said.

In other agreements/contracts news:

• Royal Philips (Amsterdam, the Netherlands) has entered into a multi-year development agreement with Janssen Pharmaceutica (Beerse, Belgium). The collaboration aims to develop a new handheld blood test to provide doctors with a novel tool to improve the care of patients with neuropsychiatric disorders.

The collaboration unites Philips' expertise in point-of-care testing and monitoring applications for the hospital and the home, with Janssen's strength in discovering and developing innovative solutions to treat brain disorders. Philips will be responsible for the development and manufacturing of the handheld test. The test will be based on Philips' Minicare system, which is currently under development. Janssen will be responsible for the clinical studies to validate the test, as well as the commercialization of the final product.

The blood test will be based on Philips' Minicare I-20 system for immunoassays, which consists of a handheld analyzer, dedicated software and a single use, disposable cartridge containing the application specific test. Based on Philips' proprietary biosensor technology, the Minicare I -20 system is being developed to detect multiple target molecules at low concentrations within the same blood sample and to show the results on the analyzer display within minutes.

• Biocartis (Mechelen, Belgium), a molecular diagnostics company, and Microbiome (Amsterdam, the Netherlands), a spin-off of the VU University Medical Center Amsterdam, have entered into a worldwide license and collaboration agreement for the development of an integrated multiplex real-time PCR assay for rapid detection of bloodstream infections.

Under the terms of the collaboration and license agreement, Microbiome's multiplex PCR assay for identification of sepsis-causing microorganisms will be further developed as an integrated multiplex real-time PCR assay on Biocartis' Idylla platform for use in conjunction with a new platform under development by Biocartis, called Idylla-Enrich. Financial details of the agreement are not disclosed.

Idylla-Enrich is a dedicated pre-enrichment platform for bloodstream infections. The Idylla-Enrich method has extensively been tested as part of the largest sepsis study in Europe to date comprising almost 7,500 clinical samples. Biocartis will further develop the platform and plans to launch it for use in conjunction with the pathogen identification test licensed from Microbiome as a streamlined solution for the diagnosis of bloodstream infections.