Alaris Medical (San Diego, California) said that its Alaris Medical Systems subsidiary completed the sale of its Instromedix unit to Card Guard Scientific Survival (Rehovat, Israel), with proceeds from the sale to be used to repay $18 million of Alaris Medical's bank debt. Card Guard develops telemedicine systems for a range of patient applications. Instromedix develops telecardiology systems with focus on non-invasive, portable cardiac event monitoring and pacemaker follow-up technologies.

Alcon Holdings completed the merger of its Alcon Acquisitions subsidiary with eye correction laser manufacturer Summit Autonomous, with Summit to become a subsidiary of Alcon Holdings. Each outstanding share of Summit Autonomous has been converted, subject to appraisal rights, into the right to receive $19 per share in cash, without interest. A letter of transmittal to be used for surrendering certificates in exchange for the cash payment will be sent to stockholders of record.

Haemonetics (Braintree, Massachusetts), a developer of automated red blood cell collection systems, said it would acquire all of Transfusion Technologies (TT; Natick Massachusetts), a developer of blood separation systems using Dynamic Disk centrifuge technology. The deal will be a purchase of stock for cash; the value was not disclosed. Haemonetics had acquired a 19.8% equity stake in Transfusion Technologies last November to become the exclusive distributor of TT's OrthoPAT auto transfusion system outside North America. The acquisition is part of Haemonetics' strategy to grow sales to $700 million by FY05 and leverage its "global presence and first-to-market advantage in the $300 million automated red blood cell collection market," the company said in a statement.

Kensey Nash (Exton, Pennsylvania) has purchased THM Biomedical (Duluth, Minnesota), a developer of porous biodegradable tissue engineering devices for repair or replacement of musculoskeletal tissues, for $11.1 million. Kensey Nash will pay $6.6 million in cash at closing and make four annual cash payments of $1.1 million each, payable quarterly from Dec. 31, 2000, and ending Sept. 30, 2004. The company will acquire THM's biomaterials technology used in articular cartilage regeneration and two commercialized products in the periodontal field, plus a $1.2 million government research grant for repairing and regenerating articular cartilage and subchondral bone. THM's manufacturing processes in Duluth will be moved to Kensey Nash's corporate headquarters.

Molecular Devices (MD; Sunnyvale, California) reported completing its purchase of LJL BioSystems (Sunnyvale, California). MD issued approximately 4.45 million shares of its common stock in the transaction – valued at approximately $348.8 million, based on the closing price of MD's stock on Aug. 30 – and assumed options and warrants to acquire approximately 675,000 additional shares. MD develops high-performance, bioanalytical measurement systems that accelerate and improve drug discovery and other life sciences research. MD's instrument systems are based on core technologies that integrate engineering, molecular and cell biology and chemistry technologies.

PhotoMedex (Radnor, Pennsylvania) said it will become a 100% owner of Acculase (San Diego, California) by acquiring about 24% of the company's common shares, that it does not yet own, for 300,000 PhotoMedex shares. Upon closing of the deal, Acculase will operate as a PhotoMedex subsidiary. PhotoMedex President and CEO Jeff O'Donnell said that the agreement with Acculase's minority shareholders will allow PhotoMedex to focus on the phase two commercial launch of its XTRACT laser system to treat psoriasis. PhotoMedex's excimer laser system, which generates 308-nm UV-B radiation, is the first FDA-approved laser treatment for psoriasis, the second most common skin disorder in the U.S.

Pharmaceutical giant Roche (Basel Switzerland) said it has agreed to purchase up to 5 million shares of TriPath Imaging (Burlington, North Carolina) stock to increase its stake in that company from 10% to 34%. Roche will acquire the additional 5 million shares over a 36-month period at exercise prices ranging from $10 to $15 per share, or more than $50 million. TriPath's Autocyte PREP System is an automated thin-layer cytology sample preparation technology that produces specimen slides with a homogeneous, thin-layer of cervical cells, and is one of only two sample preparation systems approved by the FDA as a replacement for the conventional Pap smear. AutoPap uses proprietary technology to distinguish between normal Pap smears and those that have the highest likelihood of abnormality.

Varian (Palo Alto, California) said it completed its purchase of VanKel Technology Group (Research Triangle Park, North Carolina), a supplier of dissolution testing equipment and laboratory services for the U.S. pharmaceutical market, in a deal worth an estimated $25.5 million. Varian is a supplier of scientific instruments and contract electronics manufacturing services and says its plans call for expanding into the life science market. The company has manufacturing operations in North America, Europe, and the Pacific Rim and employs 4,000.

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