A Medical Device Daily

Bracco Diagnostics (Princeton, New Jersey) reported it was awarded a three-and-a-half-year agreement to provide X-ray contrast media to HealthTrust Purchasing Group (Brentwood, Tennessee) in a deal that includes Isovue (iopamidol injection) and ionic iodinated contrast media products.

This comes on the heels of an October collaboration in which Bracco Imaging agreed to provide MRI contrast media products to HealthTrust members through Aug. 31, 2010 (Medical Device Daily, Oct. 9, 2007)

“We see this as a great opportunity to demonstrate the continued value Bracco brings through our X-ray and MRI contrast media to HealthTrust’s members,” said Carlo Medici, president and CEO of Bracco. “This agreement allows us to further demonstrate our commitment to provide useful products such as Isovue, for diagnostic imaging during interventional procedures backed by scientific data, while strengthening Bracco Imaging’s presence in the diagnostic community.”

The agreement was effective Oct. 1 and extends through April 1, 2011.

In other agreements:

• Allergan (Irvine, California) said it has entered into an alliance with a subsidiary of Covidien (Mansfield, Massachusetts) for Covidien to co-promote Allergan’s Lap-Band adjustable gastric banding system to bariatric and other surgeons in the U.S.

Under the multi-year agreement, effective Nov. 9, Covidien will use its surgical devices sales force to promote the Lap-Band system. Allergan will continue to deploy its own bariatric sales force and will continue to recognize revenues from the sale of Lap-Band.

Other financial details were not disclosed.

“The alliance with Covidien is an important step in the fight against obesity. With a strong investment in targeted consumer advertising, comprehensive surgeon and referring physician education, and robust reimbursement assistance, we are successfully broadening patient awareness of and access to the Lap-Band system,” said Robert Grant, president of Allergan Medical, a division of Allergan. “The alliance with Covidien will enable us to bring even greater value to the market by marrying our expanded and experienced field sales force with the added reach provided by Covidien’s sales representatives to further promote, educate and train surgeons on the Lap-Band system.”

• Tissue Genesis (Honolulu) reported it signed a distribution and licensing agreement with SpineSmith Partners (Austin, Texas) to market Tissue Genesis’ therapeutic cell technologies for the human spine market. Tissue Genesis will share SpineSmith’s revenues from procedures and sales. It also expects to receive revenue from sales to SpineSmith. SpineSmith has been granted rights to manufacture, use and sell Tissue Genesis manual cell isolation kits.

“This exciting new relationship with SpineSmith allows Tissue Genesis to move our therapeutic cell technologies into orthopedic markets,” said Anton Krucky, president and chief executive for Tissue Genesis. “SpineSmith’s extensive expertise with bone marrow stem cells, in both cell isolation and medical insurance reimbursement, provides a clear avenue of advancement of our adipose-derived stem cells into this important market.”

• Applied Biosystems (Foster City, California) said it has signed a licensing and collaboration agreement with BioTrove (Woburn, Massachusetts) to commercialize an analysis platform for high-throughput genotyping applications. Applied Bio will develop and market custom-built arrays of TaqMan SNP Genotyping Assays pre-loaded on BioTrove’s OpenArray platform. This platform will integrate Applied Bio’s TaqMan SNP Genotyping Assays with BioTrove’s assay format, enabling researchers to rapidly perform high-throughput genotyping studies at a lower total cost compared to alternative commercially available methods.

Applied Biosystems retains the rights to commercialize all genotyping applications, including assays other than ones based on TaqMan technology, for BioTrove’s platform. Applied Bio plans to commercialize and service all components of this analysis platform during the second half of 2008. Applied Biosystems also is retaining an option to collaborate with BioTrove to develop and commercialize the OpenArray platform for high-throughput gene expression applications.

In a separate agreement, Applied Bio has granted a worldwide license under patent rights related to real-time thermal cyclers, microfluidics, and data analysis to BioTrove. As part of this deal, BioTrove will have the right to manufacture and sell real-time thermal cyclers and array sample loaders in the life-sciences research field, as well as to develop further real-time PCR applications for its OpenArray platform.

Financial terms of the agreements were not disclosed.