bioMérieux (Marcy L'Etoile, France), a maker of in vitro diagnostics, has agreed to acquire the privately held AB Biodisk (Stockholm, Sweden), an in vitro diagnostics company with facilities for R&D, manufacturing and marketing. AB Biodisk is internationally recognized for its antimicrobial resistance testing range and particular expertise in susceptibility testing of fastidious and unusual organisms, according to bioMérieux. The company's leading product line, Etest, is used to determine the exact Minimum Inhibitory Concentration (MIC) of antibiotics, antifungal agents and antimycobacterial agents. Particularly rapid and easy to use, it has become a reference in microbiology laboratories, with more than 100 antibiotics available in the range. AB Biodisk products are mainly sold through distributors, with the exception of Sweden and the U.S. where sales are direct. bioMérieux will sell the company's products under the bioMérieux brand through its global network in 150 countries, expanding its international footprint. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

BridgePoint Medical (Lexington, Kentucky), an independently owned prosthetic and orthotic company, said it has acquired Ashville Orthotic Prosthetic Center (AOPC; Ashville, North Carolina) and retained Greg Straub and Steve Hagler, credentialed prosthetist and orthotists, respectively, as owner-operators. Other owners, Andrew Adkisson and Emily Wilder, will also remain with the company. The acquired entity will retain its name and locations in Asheville, Hendersonville and Charlotte, North Carolina and will continue to offer the same patient care without interruption.

Cyberkinetics Neurotechnology Systems (Foxborough, Massachusetts) said it has sold its Salt Lake City research products business to 12S Micro Implantable Systems (Salt Lake City) for $982,000 in cash. Cyberkinetics will retain about $570,000 in accounts receivable. The research products business provides neurotechnology equipment, including neural recording arrays, array insertion devices, and data acquisition systems to academic researchers around the world, Cyberkinetics said. "This divestiture provides capital to support our streamlined operations as we continue to focus on our strategic priority: obtaining FDA approval and launching the Andara Oscillating Field Stimulator (OFS) system for acute spinal cord injury," said Timothy Surgenor, president/CEO of Cyberkinetics. "In addition, we have retained our extensive intellectual property portfolio related to the clinical applications of our neural interface technology, which we believe may have significant value in the future."

Fox Chase Cancer Center (Philadelphia) and VisEn Medical (Woburn, Massachusetts) reported a partnership to advance Phase I clinical trials of one of VisEn's "smart" fluorescence activatable imaging agents to enable physicians to identify and characterize early stage disease in oncology patients. Olympus Medical Systems (Tokyo) will provide paired fluorescence laparoscopic imaging systems to enable the detection and evaluation of ProSense highlighted tumors in patients in the trials. The clinical trials will initially focus on ovarian cancer and are planned to begin in 2009 at Fox Chase. Under terms of the program, VisEn will develop and submit an Investigational New Drug (IND) application on a clinical analog of its proprietary fluorescence molecular imaging agent, ProSense, which highlights certain enzymatic processes associated with early stage cancer development in vivo. In addition to conducting the clinical trials, Fox Chase will invest in the ProSense clinical program through VisEn and will receive certain rights, equity and royalties on future sales.

Gen-Probe (San Diego) recently launched a conditional tender offer to acquire 100% of the outstanding shares, warrants and convertible bonds of Innogenetics (Gent, Belgium), a molecular diagnostics company, for about €215 million ($334 million) in cash. Innogenetics shareholders will receive €6.10 a share in cash, or roughly €188 million ($292 million), the company said. According to Gen-Probe, the combined entity would be the largest standalone molecular diagnostics company in the world, with pro forma 2008 sales in excess of $500 million. The combined company would offer a broad range of nucleic acid and immunoassay tests to identify bacterial and viral infectious diseases, genetic and neurological disorders, transplant compatibility, and cancer. Gen-Probe is not the only company trying to acquire Innogenetics. Belgian company Solvay Pharmaceuticals made a conditional €5.75 a share offer for the molecular diagnostics company in April.

Kinetic Concepts (KCI; San Antonio) reported that it has completed its acquisition of LifeCell (Branchburg, New Jersey). LifeCell is now a direct, wholly owned subsidiary of KCI. KCI reported in April that it would acquire LifeCell, a maker of tissue-repair products for use in reconstructive, urogynecologic and orthopedic surgical procedures, for about $1.7 billion in cash. KCI develops wound care and therapeutic support systems.