Argus Biomedical Pty (Perth, Australia) reported acquiring exclusive rights from the Lions Eye Institute of Western Australia to commercialize the AlphaCor, an artificial cornea product developed by the Biomaterials and Polymer Research Group at the institute. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. The artificial cornea, designed to replace a diseased or damaged cornea or failed human graft, can be implanted in a manner similar to implanting a donor corneal graft. Argus was recommended for CE mark approval, and a 510(k) submission to the FDA for marketing approval is in progress.

Bio-Imaging Technologies (Newtown, Pennsylvania) has purchased the Intelligent Imaging business of Quintiles Transnational (Research Triangle Park, North Carolina), which provides digital medical imaging services for clinical trials and the health care industry.

Cantel Medical (Little Falls, New Jersey) reported that its Carsen Group (Markham, Ontario) subsidiary, a medical equipment distributor and service organization, has acquired Technimed (Montreal, Quebec), another medical device service business. Terms of the purchase were not disclosed. Carsen said the acquisition provides it with access to a well-established customer base and technical management experience in hand-held surgical instrumentation and rigid endoscope repair. Carsen will use its dedicated instrument service technical representatives to bundle products and services across the country. Cantel is focused on developing infection prevention and control products and diagnostic and therapeutic medical equipment through its Minntech and MediVator subsidiaries.

OIX, a wholly owned subsidiary of Surgical Safety Products (SSPD; Sarasota, Florida), has completed a 50/50 merger with C5 Health (also Sarasota). SSPD is a medical products company specializing in the development and patent of surgical safety devices. C5 Health is a health care communications company.

Rad Source (Boca Raton, Florida) has signed a definitive purchase agreement to acquire Advanced X-Ray (AXI; Atlanta, Georgia). The purchase is subject to financing and the completion of AXI's audit, among other conditions. AXI is a leader in the field of industrial X-ray imaging. Rad Source is a developer of X-ray technology products for medical, scientific and industrial use.

Serologicals (Norcross, Georgia) has signed an agreement to acquire Intergen (Purchase, New York), a privately owned company that supplies a wide array of biological products and technologies to the life sciences sector. Serologicals will purchase Intergen for $45 million in cash, less the amounts necessary to complete the expansion of Intergen's manufacturing facility in Toronto, Ontario. The current owners of Intergen are eligible for additional compensation dependent upon successful commercialization of certain Intergen products and technologies. The consummation of the acquisition is conditioned upon approval by the limited partners of Intergen, and is expected to close before year-end. Intergen provides products and technologies in three markets: biotechnology products, diagnostic components and life sciences research. Serologicals is a provider of biological products to life science companies.

Synthes-Stratec (Oberdorf, Switzerland) is selling its European artificial limbs business to Biomet Merck for an undisclosed sum to focus on its core osteosynthesis activity. Synthes-Stratec said in a statement that the business took up a "disproportionate amount" of management time. Biomet Merck is a joint venture of Biomet (Warsaw, Indiana) and German-based Merck KgaA. The European business had accounted for about two-thirds of the unit's total sales last year. The sale was scheduled to take effect on Nov. 26. The company's core osteosynthesis activities relate to the process of knitting broken bones back together.

TLC Laser Eye Centers (Mississauga, Ontario) and Laser Vision Centers (St. Louis, Missouri) said that the Hart-Scott-Rodino waiting period for their previously announced merger expired on Oct. 18. The companies said they continue to expect closure of the transaction during TLC's fiscal 2002 third quarter. TLC Laser Eye Centers and its subsidiaries develop and manage laser vision correction centers in the U.S. and Canada. Laser Vision Centers provides excimer lasers and other equipment to eye surgeons for the treatment of nearsightedness, farsightedness, astigmatism and cataracts.

Zila (Phoenix, Arizona) is selling its Zila Dental Supply division. Total gross proceeds from the divestiture of the division's assets will be approximately $13.8 million in a combination of cash and notes, with proceeds subject to certain closing adjustments. The division's full-service operations have been sold to Henry Schein (Melville, New York). Definitive agreements also have been signed for the sale of the division's mail-order operations to PracticeWares (Sacramento, California). Zila said approximately $3 million of the proceeds will be used to accelerate progress of the Phase III clinical trial presently under way in support of the new drug application for the company's OraTest oral cancer detection product, and a portion will be used to pay off Zila's existing line of credit. The company said the divestiture represents a major refocusing of its strategic direction, allowing it to concentrate on the development and marketing of its own pharmaceutical, biotechnology and nutraceutical products.

Source: The BBI Newsletter