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GEN News Highlights : Oct 7, 2009

Gen-Probe to Pay $60M in Prodesse Buyout

Firm has molecular tests for respiratory infectious diseases.

Gen-Probe plans on acquiring Prodesse for approximately $60 million in cash. Achievement of certain financial and regulatory milestones in the next two years will trigger an additional $25 million payment. Prodesse develops molecular diagnostic reagents for a variety of infectious disease applications.

In connection with the acquisition, Gen-Probe and Prodesse have signed an agreement under which Gen-Probe's sales representatives in the U.S., Canada, and Europe will begin co-promoting Prodesse's assays later this month. Gen-Probe's initial expectation is that the acquisition will add approximately $0.05 to the its 2010 EPS, based on approximately $15 million in total revenues. Prodesse sells three FDA 510(k) cleared products in the U.S. and two additional CE-marked products in Europe.

The company's assays can be used in conjunction with various nucleic acid extraction and real-time PCR platforms including Cepheid's SmartCycler® II System. Prodesse's ProFlu+™ test was approved by the FDA in January 2008 for the detection and discrimination of influenza A virus, influenza B virus, and respiratory syncytial virus. It is the only commercially available, FDA-cleared molecular test for these respiratory viruses that uses real-time PCR technology, according to the companies.

Prodesse also sells FDA-approved, real-time PCR assays for the clinical diagnosis of Clostridium difficile and human metapneumovirus, a common cause of lower respiratory infection in children.