Konica Minolta buys US genetic test maker in $1B deal – BioPharma Dive

Posted: July 10, 2017 at 2:48 am

Dive Brief:

KonicaMinolta, which formed in 2003 as a result of a merger between the photographic companies Konica and Minolta, has been working to bolster its healthcare business. The acquisition of Ambry is KonicaMinolta's largest to date and is aimed at building a foundation in precision medicine.

Konicasees Ambry's genetic testing chops as a complement to its own imaging technology. The deal will build on an immunostaining technology Konica developed in 2015 known as High-Sensitivity Tissue Testing (HSTT).

"The combination of these bioinformatics capabilities, alongside Konica Minoltas HSTT technology, will create new opportunities for drug discovery and clinical trials not currently available,"said Kiyotaka Fujii, president of Global Healthcare at Konica Minolta.

Konicaplans to first roll our Ambry's offerings alongside its own in Japan and then will expand to Europe. In addition to aforementioned test for DNA mismatch repair mutations, Amby has a range of screens for both inherited and non-inherited diseases in oncology, cardiology, pulmonology and neurology. Ambryalso offers hereditary cancer panels and clinical exome sequencing.

The lofty goals of precision medicine, while often touted, remain unrealized. But recent progress in genetic screening, particularly in oncology, is bringing that vision closer to reality. The Food and Drug Administration's recent green light for Keytruda in DNA mismatch repair mutated-tumors, for example, marked the first tissue-agnostic approval to date.

While Ambrysecured a major buyout, other diagnostic companies have had a tougher week.Massachusetts-based Interleukin Genetics, which has been struggling to generate revenue and pay off debts, saw an agreement to defer loan payments to its senior lender crumble. It's now evaluating its strategy, including a sale, and has cut over half of its already small workforce.

Top image credit: Adobe Stock

Konica Minolta buys US genetic test maker in $1B deal - BioPharma Dive

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