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Life Technologies Wraps Up BioTrove Acquisition

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This article was originally posted on Dec. 15.

Life Technologies said this week that it has completed its acquisition of BioTrove for an undisclosed amount.

Life Tech last month disclosed its plans to acquire BioTrove for its OpenArray platform — a flexible array about the size of a microscope slide that enables more than 3,000 PCR genotyping or qPCR gene expression assays at a time [PCR Insider 11/17/09].

At the time, a company official said that the acquisition would give it a new, higher-density format for its PCR portfolio.

Life Tech's Applied Biosystems subsidiary previously offered gene-expression and genotyping assays preloaded on microtiter plates or on 384-well microfluidics cards, but prior to the BioTrove acquisition, customers were not able to get most of that content in a higher-throughput format.

BioTrove and ABI were already working together prior to the purchase agreement. The firms entered into a collaboration in 2007 that gave ABI exclusive rights to develop and market genotyping assays preloaded on the OpenArray platform. That agreement also gave ABI an option to work with BioTrove to co-develop high-throughput gene expression applications for the system.

Solidifying that relationship through an acquisition "just made sense," John Gerace, vice president and general manager of Life Technologies' PCR business, told PCR Insider last month. "We were already selling the genotyping applications, we were going to put gene expression on the platform. They were selling gene expression and we were selling genotyping, so there were channel synergies that we automatically get from this."

BioTrove currently offers a range of gene-expression assays for the OpenArray platform that use the SYBR chemistry. Life Tech plans to continue selling those assays, and will also augment the portfolio to include TaqMan-based gene expression assays.

Life Tech this week reiterated previous statements that it does not expect the acquisition to have a material effect on its financials in fiscal year 2009.

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