Beckman Coulter (Fullerton, California) said it has acquired a point-of-care system for prothrombin time testing from Avocet Medical (San Jose, California). The $3 million transaction gives Beckman Coulter all rights to the AvoSure system, a hand-held device used to monitor patients undergoing anticoagulation therapy. Beckman Coulter plans to market the FDA-approved and CLIA-waived system principally to clinics, physicians' offices and home health service providers. The company will transfer manufacture of the hand-held meter and disposable test strips to its own facilities, and plans to begin marketing the system in late 2002.

Medtronic (Minneapolis, Minnesota) has acquired from GE Medical Systems Information Technology (GEMS IT; Waukesha, Wisconsin) that company's Paceart division, a leader in the development of database systems for pacemakers, implantable defibrillators and arrhythmia management systems. Michael Bergelson, PhD, president of Paceart, will join Medtronic's management team and Paceart will become an operating unit of Medtronic's CRM Patient Management Group. Medtronic said it would combine its CareLink Network with Paceart's expertise in cardiac follow-up systems to create "the first Internet-based patient management system that provides remote device and patient management." It said this combination would be complemented by the new Medtronic CareLink Programmer, which is pending FDA clearance, and additional company initiatives.

MedSource Technologies (Minneapolis, Minnesota) said it has completed the acquisition of HV Technologies (HVT; Trenton, Georgia), a maker of high-performance, thin-wall polyimide and composite tubing and catheter systems used in interventional and minimally invasive catheters, delivery systems and instruments.

United Therapeutics (Silver Spring, Maryland) reported acquiring exclusive worldwide rights to manufacture, sell and use diagnostic tests for asymmetric dimethlyarginine (ADMA), a marker of heart disease risk, saying the purchase price "was less than $2 million." While United did not specifically name the seller, it said the marker was originally patented by a team of researchers at Stanford University (Palo Alto, California), led by John Cooke, director of vascular medicine. Martine Rothblatt, chairman and CEO of United, said that those with elevated ADMA levels "appear to be the ones that achieve the most cardiovascular benefit from arginine supplementation," a therapy marketed by United's Unither Pharma subsidiary.