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UK Forensic Provider Will Not Renew Service Deal With Orchid Cellmark

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) - Forensic Alliance, a British DNA-testing service provider, will not renew an exclusive partnership with Orchid Cellmark to use the company's DNA testing services, Orchid said in a Securities and Exchange Commission filing this morning.
 
On July 15, 2002, Orchid became an "exclusive subcontractor" to provide forensic DNA testing services to all Forensic Alliance customers, which includes police departments throughout the UK.
 
The initial five-year deal, set to expire at the end of the week, could have been continued for additional one-year periods "unless either party gave not less than 12 months' written notice of termination prior to the end of the then current term."
 
Forensic Alliance decided not to renew after it was acquired last year by LGC, a provider of analytical and diagnostic services, including DNA testing services. "To that extent, [LGC] is in a position to compete for the business that [Orchid] currently conducts" for Forensic Alliance, Orchid said in the filing.
 
On July 7 Orchid received a notice from Forensic Alliance terminating their agreement. The partnership will formally end July 15.
 
Orchid said it "began implementing plans to enable it to directly provide its services to UK police forces" after LGC said it acquired Forensic Alliance
 
Orchid has had at least one other link with LGC. In 2002, Orchid Cellmark, called Orchid BioSciences at the time, obtained a license from LGC for an assay for cytochrome P450 2D6 gene.
 
The license, which was nonexclusive, enabled Orchid to market genetic testing services for polymorphisms of this gene, which influences the metabolism of many prescription drugs.