Industry news in brief

By Dr Matt Wilkinson

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Beckman coulter Laboratory equipment Vice president of the united states Patent Agilent presents its periodic round up of recent
industry news with new developments at Agilent, Beckman Coulter,
Carl Zeiss, DuPont, Luminex and PerkinElmer.

Agilent​ plans to relocate its atomic force microscopy plant to a new 30,000 sq. ft. facility in Chandler which will more than triple the size of the company's previous facility in Tempe. The company plans to relocate and add to the 67 staff currently working in the Tempe facility to the new plant which is less than 20 miles away. "The move is an important strategic step in the growth of our business in nanoscale measurements,"​ said Bob Burns, Agilent vice president and general manager of the nanotechnology measurement division. Agilent​ has also recently been awarded 2006 Frost & Sullivan (F&S) Growth Strategy Leadership award for the European Gene Expression market. The awards are given each year to the company that F&S believe has demonstrated an exceptional growth strategy within their industry. "We have experienced tremendous growth over the past several years and are very optimistic about the future potential in this industry,"​ said Kevin Meldrum, marketing manager of Agilent Genomics Division. Beckman Coulter​ has been informed that the competing bid from Inverness Medical Innovations​ was deemed to be more favourable by Biosite​'s Board of Directors than their existing definitive merger agreement. If Biosite terminates its agreement with Beckman Coulter and accepts the Inverness bid it will be liable to pay a $50m termination fee. The proposed acquisition by Beckman Coulter recently received clearance from the German Federal Cartel Office. Carl Zeiss​ and SII NanoTechnology​ have opened a joint demonstration centre in Yokohama as part of their global strategic alliance announced in March 2006. The demonstration centre holds five demonstration laboratories, meeting rooms, training and office space and will initially house NVision 40 CrossBeam, ULTRA 55 SEM, SUPRA 40 VP SEM and SMI 3050 FIB instruments for customer demonstration and training, with additional equipment to follow. DuPont​ has settled patent infringement litigation against Bio-Rad​ with respect to low-heat generating fluorometer devices usable in assays based on Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) technology. Bio-Rad has been granted non-exclusive rights to the DuPont patents, however other details were not disclosed. "DuPont has a long heritage and commitment to developing sustainable products for this industry,"​ said Kevin Huttman, president of DuPont Qualicon. "To continue with future innovations, we must protect our investment in this technology through aggressive assertion of our patent rights when we believe they are being violated." Luminex​ has acquired a non-exclusive license from The Johns Hopkins University for the rights to the University's cystic fibrosis genetic markers to use in the company's molecular diagnostic products sold in the US. "These genetic markers from John Hopkins are an important element in advancing the diagnosis and monitoring of cystic fibrosis,"​ said Jeremy Bridge-Cook, vice president of Luminex Molecular Diagnostics. "We are pleased to be able to provide our customers and distributors with the rights to these markers as part of our Tag-It Cystic Fibrosis Kit." PerkinElmer​ has opened its new 115,000 sq. ft. corporate headquarters and technology centre in Waltham, Massachusetts, US. The facility includes a state of the art research and development facility for the company's drug discovery, cellular science and diagnostic businesses. "Our new facility provides us with an ideal environment to create innovative new products that will help our customers improve the quality of life - from the discovery of new drugs to the early detection of disease. More than our products, it is our people that define our success,"​ said Gregory L. Summe, PerkinElmer CEO.

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