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Progenika Gives Grifols Rights to Distribute Bloodchip

By a GenomeWeb staff reporter

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – Spanish biotech Progenika Biopharma has granted exclusive worldwide distribution rights to Grifols for its Bloodchip product line, Progenika announced today.

The chips are used for genotyping blood donors to assure compatibility between donor and recipient. Progenika and the Bloodgen Consortium, which consists of European blood banks and research institutes, developed the chips.

Terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

While use of molecular biology tests in transfusion compatibility is still in its early stages, it is anticipated to become more widespread because of hemovigilance and transfusion safety plans being implemented in many countries, Progenika said in a statement. The new product line is expected to generate revenues of between €50 million and €100 million ($62 million and $123 million) during the next five years, it added.

The Bloodchip uses an integrated circuit to determine the main allelic variants of blood groups and platelet antigens by analyzing 128 genetic polymorphisms. It is used to prevent potential transfusion reactions in patients where traditional serological tests are insufficient, Progenika said.

The distribution deal, said Antonio Martinez, CEO of Progenika, will ensure that the company's products will be properly marketed, allowing his firm to concentrate on developing new products.

Progenika is based in Barcelona, Spain and develops and commercializes diagnostic and prognostic products. Grifols, also headquartered in Barcelona, develops, manufactures, and markets plasma derivatives, IV therapy, enteral nutrition, diagnostic systems, and medical materials, according to its website.