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In Brief This Week: Waters; Abbott; Danaher; Mimetas; DiagnoCure; QuantuMDx

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb) – Waters officially opened its new mass spectrometry headquarters in Wilmslow, UK this week. The new facility brings together the company's mass spec centers in the region consisting of more than 500 employees and includes customer demonstration laboratories, R&D capabilities, and an expanded manufacturing capacity.

Abbott's board has approved the repurchase of up to $3 billion of its common stock. The new buyback program is in addition to the $511 million unused portion of its previous program announced in June 2013. The board also declared a quarterly common dividend of $.22 per share payable on Nov. 15 to shareholders of record at the close of business on Oct. 15.

Danaher's board approved a regular quarterly dividend of $.10 per share payable on Oct. 31 to shareholders of record on Sept. 26.

Mimetas has received $1.6 million in funding to develop a kidney-on-a-chip for toxicological applications. The Dutch company will collaborate with Radboud University Nijmegen Medical Center and the University of Applied Sciences and Arts Northwestern Switzerland on the project. The funding was awarded in the context of the NephroTube Crack It Challenge to develop a microfluidic renal model for predicting renal toxicity during pre-clinical development. The award will be used to develop, analyze, and validate a high-throughput kidney-on-a-chip model by combining Mimetas' OrganoPlate 3D-culturing technology with the human renal cell line ciPTEC.

DiagnoCure reported that its fiscal third quarter revenues declined by 19 percent year over year on a reduction in royalties related to the prostate cancer biomarker PCA3. For the three months ended July 31, revenues at the Quebec City-based molecular diagnostics company slipped to C$153,424 (US$138,511) from C$189,585 a year ago. Its total revenues for both periods were derived from license and royalty payments. DiagnoCure has an agreement with Hologic for the marketing and sale of the Progensa PCA3 assay and earlier this year it expressed displeasure with Hologic's promotion of the assay and said it would pursue efforts to regain the rights to the PCA3 gene. It did not provide an update on those efforts.

DiagnoCure's net loss for the fiscal third quarter was C$504,105, or C$.01 per share, compared to a net loss of C$595,262, or C$.01 per share, a year ago. It reduced its R&D spending to C$307,294 from C$362,537 a year ago and its SG&A costs to C$305,660 from C$375,338. The company exited the quarter with C$2.5 million in cash and short-term investments.

QuantuMDx said it has successfully produced its first fully integrated prototype of Q-POC, a handheld point-of-care molecular diagnostic device. The company previously said that it anticipates commercializing the device in 2015.

In Brief This Week is a Friday column containing news items that our readers may have missed during the