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Opko Acquires Brazilian Pharma Company, Clearing Way for Launch of 4kscore Prostate Cancer Test

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Opko Health said it has completed the acquisition of the Brazilian pharmaceutical firm Importacao E Exportacao de Produtos Farmaceuticos e Cosmeticos.

The acquisition will allow Opko to commercialize its Opko 4kscore prostate cancer diagnostic in Brazil as a laboratory-developed test while it obtains Brazilian approval for an in vitro diagnostic version of the product.

The 4kscore test uses two protein biomarkers in the kallikrein family along with prostate-specific antigen for early detection of prostate cancer. Opko licensed the two markers from Finnish biotech firm Artic Partners in January 2012 (PM 1/30/2012).

According to Opko, use of the panel could potentially eliminate more than 50 percent of unnecessary prostate biopsies by improving on the specificity of existing PSA tests.

In October, Opko started European sales of the test, marketing it through its partner International Health Technology (PM 10/5/2012). It is also planning to launch the test in the US as a laboratory-developed test in the near future.

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