A Diagnostics & Imaging Week

Affymetrix (Santa Clara, California) reported the completion of its acquisition of Panomics (Fremont, California) which offers a suite of assay products for a wide variety of low- to mid-plex genetic, protein, and cellular analysis applications.

The deal is being completed for nearly $73 million in cash.

"The acquisition of Panomics will strengthen our position in the high-growth market segments of validation and routine testing and create further operating leverage," said Affymetrix president Kevin King. "Customers will benefit from a more complete workflow, beginning with whole-genome Affymetrix microarray studies and then using Panomics products to focus on genes and proteins of interest."

Panomics has grown rapidly with a number of easy-to-use, low- to mid-plex products and sells into an installed base of more than 5,600 instruments worldwide. These products cover a broad range of sample types and offer a direct assay approach with high sensitivity and specificity.

The assays do not require nucleic acid extraction or amplification, which streamlines workflows for applications such as gene expression, copy number, and cytogenetics.

Panomics' products complement Affymetrix's recently acquired liquid array technology and will enable the company to address low- to mid-plex genetic analysis requirements more effectively.

In other dealmaking activity, Given Imaging (Yoqneam, Israel) reported that it has acquired the Bravo pH monitoring business for the diagnosis of Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD) from Medtronic (Minneapolis) for $20 million.

The only wireless, catheter-free pH test for GERD, the Bravo system uses a disposable capsule temporarily placed in the esophagus that measures pH levels and transmits the data to an external receiver. pH testing is considered the gold standard for diagnosing GERD and during 2007 over 258,000 pH procedures were conducted in the U.S.

Datamonitor estimated that around 147 million people in the U.S., Japan, France, Germany, Italy, Spain and the UK (around 20% of the population) suffer from GERD. The Bravo pH monitoring system is sold mainly in the US and to a lesser extent in Europe and is backed by strong reimbursement coverage in the U.S. Under the terms of the agreement, Given will pay Medtronic $20 million. A small portion of the purchase price is contingent upon Medtronic completing the development of a new capsule delivery system already underway. During the first 12 months after the transaction closes, Medtronic will continue to supply the Bravo products to Given Imaging. During this 12 month period, Given Imaging intends to complete the transition of the Bravo system manufacturing operations to Israel.

Given Imaging expects to incur a one time charge of nearly $5 million in the 4Q08 in connection with the acquisition.