A Medical Device Daily

Gen-Probe (San Diego) reported that 3M (St. Paul, Minnesota) has informed it that it will no longer fund their joint collaboration to develop rapid molecular assays for the food testing industry. The companies expect to formally terminate the collaboration in the coming days.

“Gen-Probe continues to believe that rapid molecular tests have the potential — over time — to increase the safety of the world’s food supply,” said Hank Nordhoff, Gen-Probe’s president/CEO and chairman. He said that the collaboration depends on 3M’s effort “to assess the commercial readiness of the food testing market” and provide further funding. Thus, with 3M’s decision, Gen-Probe will redirect resources “to other high-value projects, including our separate partnership with 3M to develop rapid molecular tests for healthcare-associated infections.”

Gen-Probe said it still anticipates recording milestone revenue of $2 million in the 4Q07 associated with achieving technological feasibility for potential food testing assays, revenue potential contemplated in the financial guidance the company provided on Oct. 30. In 2008, the company expects collaborative research revenues to be about $2 million less than previously anticipated due to the absence of development reimbursement from 3M related to the food testing collaboration.

“Food safety remains an important growth platform for 3M,” said Chuck Kummeth, VP and general manager, 3M Medical Division. “But we have chosen to focus on opportunities other than molecular food testing that are more economically attractive. This decision does not affect our separate partnership with Gen-Probe to develop nucleic acid tests to detect dangerous healthcare-associated infections such as methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA).

In other agreements: Radiotherapy Simulators and Accelerators (RS&A; Rural Hall, North Carolina), a southeastern U.S. provider of oncology equipment sales and service, reported an alliance with Radiology Oncology Systems (ROS; Exton, Pennsylvania) and Acceletronics, (San Diego) to market and support the TheraView Electronic Portal Imaging for Image Guided Radiation Therapy (IGRT) and Intensity Modulated Radiation Therapy (IMRT) verification.

ROS, RS&A, and Acceletronics’ relationship includes the co-marketing of pre-owned/refurbished IMRT and IGRT-equipped linear accelerators, CT and MRI Scanners, and other imaging equipment.

ROS develops equipment for radiation oncology and diagnostic imaging facilities around the world with quality, cost-effective solutions for equipment.

Acceletronics specializes in onsite-repair of medical imaging equipment.