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In Brief This Week: Chembio, Gradientech, PerkinElmer, Becton Dickinson, More

NEW YORK – Biosynex said this week it has completed its $17.2 million acquisition of infectious disease, point-of-care testing firm Chembio Diagnostics. Biosynex paid $.45 in cash for each share of Chembio's stock. Chembio is now a wholly owned subsidiary of Biosynex and its stock has stopped trading on the Nasdaq. 

Gradientech announced this week that it is collaborating with clinical microbiology instrument distributor A.D.A. SRL to commercialize the QuickMIC antibiotic susceptibility testing system for the Italian market. A.D.A. SRL has also invested an undisclosed amount in the company, Gradientech noted in a statement. A.D.A. is now one of the 10 largest investors in Gradientech, the firm added. The system gained compliance with Europe’s In Vitro Diagnostic Regulation requirements in August. 

Bionano said this week that it is withdrawing its applications for Category I Current Procedural Terminology (CPT) codes for its OGM technology ahead of the May 2023 CPT Editorial Panel meeting, during which the company’s applications would have been reviewed. Bionano said it is doing so to mitigate the possibility of OGM being assigned Category III CPT codes instead of Category I CPT codes. According to the company, Category III CPT codes can be assigned if a technology is considered to be emerging. Because these codes are not assigned pricing under Medicare's clinical laboratory fee schedule, reimbursement of the technology would be primarily at the payor’s discretion. 

Becton Dickinson’s board of directors declared a quarterly dividend this week of $.91 per common share payable on June 30 to holders of record on June 9. The indicated annual dividend rate is $3.64 per share. 

PerkinElmer said this week that its board of directors has approved a regular quarterly dividend of $.07 per share of common stock, payable on Aug. 11 to shareholders of record at the close of business July 21. 

Yourgene Health said this week that it expects fiscal year 2023 revenues of £19.0 million ($23.7 million). Sales in Europe "remain suppressed" during FY2023, which ended March 31, due to the loss of a single NIPT account in FY2022, the UK molecular diagnostics firm said, while international revenues were up 70 percent year over year, with strong performance in the Americas and in Asia-Pacific. The company is currently negotiating to divest its Taiwanese laboratory and has been focusing on reshaping its business internally. In January of this year, Yourgene raised approximately £6.8 million in net proceeds from a capital funding round and is in the midst of reducing its operating costs. As of March 31, the firm had £2.8 million in cash. 

Epigenomics said this week that revenues for 2022 dropped to €500,000 ($549,000) from €6.2 million in 2021. Prior-year revenues included €5.7 million from the sale of samples from the firm's blood sample database, the German developer of molecular diagnostics for cancer said. It added that it recorded other income of €1.9 million in 2022, compared to €3.2 million in 2021, due to exchange rate volatility. Total exchange rate gains last year were €1.8 million, Epigenomics said. The firm had net loss of €12.0 million, or €2.96 per share, last year compared to net loss of €2.4 million, or €.87 per share, in the prior year. Its R&D costs increased to €6.7 million from €3.1 million in 2021 as pandemic-related short time work was discontinued. Its SG&A costs dropped to €6.6 million from €7.5 million a year ago. Epigenomics ended 2022 with €10.1 million in cash and cash equivalents. 

OpGen subsidiary Curetis said this week that it has completed all key milestones outlined in an R&D collaboration with FIND by developing and performing initial wet-lab testing of a Unyvero A30 instrument for use in low- and middle-income countries. The firm said it designed, built, and tested prototypes of the firm's sample-to-result Unyvero A30 with modifications that would allow use of the instrument in locations with high dust, extended temperature ranges, and power outages. The cartridge-based platform can test for up to 33 targets in one specimen. Achieving the key milestones under that agreement triggers a $300,000 payment to the firm. 

Trinity Biotech said this week that it has closed on the previously announced sale of its Fitzgerald Industries life sciences supply business to Biosynth for cash proceeds of $30 million. Fitzgerald Industries is comprised of Benen Trading and Fitzgerald Industries International. Trinity has used about $11 million of the proceeds to repay $10.1 million of its secured debt held by Perceptive Advisors, as well as a $900,000 early payment penalty. In connection with the transaction, the Dublin-based firm has entered into an amendment to its senior secured term loan credit facility with Perceptive Advisors, reducing the minimum revenue covenants under the loan. Trinity was recently warned by Nasdaq that it did not comply with a minimum bid price requirement to continue listing on the exchange. 

Private equity firm TA Associates plans to make a strategic growth investment in Diatech Pharmacogenetics, the Italian pharmacogenetics and cancer precision medicine diagnostics company announced this week. The investment, expected to close in Q2, will support Diatech's efforts to expand into markets internationally. Financial terms were not disclosed, but as part of the deal, Diatech leaders will retain majority ownership of the company while minority investor Alto Partners will exit its stake. 

Promis Diagnostics said this week that its EarlyTect BCD test for the detection of bladder cancer has received breakthrough device designation from the US Food and Drug Administration. The assay qualitatively detects PENK methylation, an epigenetic biomarker associated with bladder cancer in the urine DNA of patients with hematuria. PENK methylation presents highly frequently in the urine DNA of patients with bladder cancer and rarely in hematuria patients without bladder cancer, the Irvine, California-based company said in a statement.

In Brief This Week is a selection of news items that may be of interest to our readers but had not previously appeared on 360Dx.