BioTransplant (Charlestown, Massachusetts) said it has agreed with Gambro BCT (Lakewood, Colorado) to terminate the companies' distribution agreement for the Eligix HDM Cell Separation Systems. Eligix systems use monoclonal antibodies to remove unwanted cells from bone marrow, peripheral blood stem cell and donor leukocyte grafts used in transplant procedures. The termination was mutually agreed upon by both parties to settle all claims and disputes between the companies. As part of the termination agreement, BioTransplant will pay Gambro an undisclosed amount to repurchase unused inventory, and Gambro will agree to provide customer support through Jan. 15, 2003.

CADx Systems (Beavercreek, Ohio) has signed a development and distribution agreement with GE Medical Systems (GEMS; Waukesha, Wisconsin). GEMS will integrate CADx Systems' Second Look computer-aided detection (CAD) software for use with the GE Senographe 2000D full-field digital mammography system, which is based on technology developed by GE to produce digital X-ray images without film and is designed to generate digital mammographic images that can be used for the screening and diagnosis of breast cancer. CADx's FDA-approved Second Look uses software technology to highlight potential areas of concern on a mammograph report, calling attention to subtle changes in tissue that may indicate the presence of cancer. Integration of the GE Senographe 2000D and the CADx Second Look CAD software will require FDA clearance for clinical use in the U.S.

CAS Medical Systems (Branford, Connecticut) and Masimo (Irvine, California), a developer of motion and low perfusion-tolerant pulse oximetry, have signed a purchasing and licensing agreement to incorporate Masimo's Signal Extraction Technology (SET) into future CAS vital signs monitors with pulse oximetry functionality. CAS will integrate Masimo's MS-7 pulse oximetry module in its multi-parameter monitors, including the new Model 740 monitor that measures blood pressure, pulse oximetry and temperature, to enable Masimo SET performance. CAS makes medical products with a specific emphasis in neonatal intensive care, blood pressure measurement equipment and apnea monitoring equipment.

Facts and Comparisons (St. Louis, Missouri) and MedKeeper (Denver, Colorado) unveiled a strategic alliance in which the two companies will collaborate on bringing to market electronic information products for hospital clinicians. The collaboration will involve seamlessly integrating eFacts, a line of browser-based products, and MedFacts with FormChecker, an electronic formulary management tool developed by MedKeeper. The companies said this will enable access to a source of drug information directly from a customizable hospital formulary. Facts and Comparisons is a provider of drug information for pharmacists and other healthcare professionals. MedKeeper specializes in developing software products that embed clinical knowledge into workflow solutions for the healthcare market.

iCAD (Hudson, New Hampshire) , which makes computer-aided detection imaging technology and systems for the early detection of breast cancer, and Instrumentarium's (Helsinki, Finland) Imaging Division (Tuusula, Finland) signed a development and marketing agreement to provide CAD capabilities for Instrumentarium's digital mammography system, which is currently under development. The companies also will cooperate in adapting iCAD's technology for use in the analysis of digital mammograms created by the Instrumentarium system, thus assisting radiologists in identifying cancers that might otherwise be overlooked in routine mammography screening. The companies will cooperate in securing marketing approval from the FDA and Instrumentarium will have worldwide exclusive rights to market the iCAD software with its digital mammography system.

International Technidyne (ITC; Edison, New Jersey), a subsidiary of Thoratec (Pleasanton, California), has signed an agreement with Sulzer Carbomedics (Austin, Texas), a subsidiary of Centerpulse and a developer of mechanical heart valves, to co-market ITC's ProTime blood coagulation testing system to cardiothoracic surgeons in the U.S. Carbomedics sales representatives will promote the ProTime system to surgeons who implant mechanical heart valves. The ITC sales force will train Carbomedics reps on the ProTime system and, on occasion, accompany them on sales calls. Originally introduced as a professional-use device, ProTime became the first FDA-cleared system for patient self-testing. The system consists of a small, battery-powered instrument and a disposable cuvette.

Masimo (Irvine, California), a developer of motion and low perfusion-tolerant pulse oximetry technology, has formed a strategic alliance with Chinese medical device manufacturer, Shenzhen Mindray Bio-Medical Electronics Co. Ltd. (Mindray; Shenzhen, China). Mindray, the largest domestic manufacturer of patient monitoring products in China, will incorporate Masimo SET motion and low perfusion tolerant pulse oximetry as its primary pulse oximetry technology for its patient monitoring products. Mindray, a sino-U.S. joint venture, makes electro-medical equipment in the patient monitoring, laboratory instrument and medical ultrasound fields.