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In Brief This Week:, Thermo Fisher Scientific, Agilent, Labcorp, More

NEW YORK – Thermo Fisher Scientific this week became the founding sponsor for Momentum Labs, a new biotech hub in Alachua, Florida. Located in the greater Gainesville region, Momentum Labs “provides critical infrastructure and business development resources to support the growth of life sciences in Florida, giving the ecosystem the opportunity to retain companies rather than losing them to other communities,” Abhinav Akhoury, Thermo Fisher VP of corporate accounts, said in a statement. 

Agilent Technologies said this week its board of directors had authorized the repurchase of up to $2 billion worth of shares of the company's common stock beginning March 1. In a statement, Agilent CFO Bob McMahon said the repurchase program is a key element of the firm's strategy of balanced capital deployment that delivers growth and strong returns for shareholders. The firm said the program may be suspended or discontinued at any time. 

Laboratory Corporation of America this week declared a cash dividend of $.72 per share of common stock. The dividend will be payable on March 13, to stockholder of record as of the close of business on Feb. 23. 

Aspira Women’s Health projected that its Q4 2022 OvaSuite testing volumes will be up 18 percent year over year. The Austin, Texas-based firm this week provided preliminary Q4 results that showed it performed 5,643 OvaSuite tests in Q4 2022, up from 4,768 tests in Q4 2022. For full-year 2022, test volume was 21,424, up 23 percent from 17,377 in 2021. Aspira added that it laid off staff last week and anticipates it will achieve its previously stated Q4 cash utilization guidance of between $6 million and $8 million. 

MDxHealth this week said that it expects preliminary 2022 revenues of about $37 million, which would be a 66 percent increase from $22.2 million in 2021. The company also expects a year-end cash balance of $15.5 million and reaffirmed its 2023 revenue guidance of between $65 million and $70 million. 

Autoimmune disease diagnostics firm Exagen said this week in a document filed with the US Securities and Exchange Commission that it projects Avise CTD test volume of 33,800 for the recently completed fourth quarter. Revenues for Q1 2023 are estimated at between $8.2 million and $9.2 million, the San Diego-based company said. 

DermTech said this week that the Defense Health Agency's Lab Joint Working Group has recommended that the foundational assay included in the DermTech Melanoma Test (DMT) be covered by TRICARE. The recommendation makes the assay available to the healthcare program's 9 million members and beneficiaries of the military health system. According to La Jolla, California-based DermTech, DMT enhances melanoma detection with a better than 99 percent negative predictive value. It added that DermTech now has about 113 million total covered lives in the US. 

San Diego-based microbiome-based liquid biopsy firm Micronoma said this week that its OncobiotaLung assay has received breakthrough device designation from the US Food and Drug Administration. The test can categorize lung nodules into high risk or low risk of malignancy with a simple blood draw. 

Isohelix, a UK-based biological sample collection company, announced this week that it has filed a 510(k) pre-submission with the US Food and Drug Administration for its GeneFix saliva collectors. The collection devices are nonhazardous and stabilize both DNA and RNA over extended periods at room temperature, according to Isohelix, providing high-quality samples for molecular diagnostics in point-of-care settings and for over-the-counter, direct-to-consumer genetic testing. 

Next Gen Diagnostics (NGD) said this week that it has formed a subsidiary, NGD Israel, to offer low-cost pathogen sequencing, transmission detection, and sequence-based infectious disease diagnostics in that country. The new offshoot will have a centrally located pathogen sequencing laboratory to provide rapid services to customers across Israel. Services will include extraction, library preparation, sequencing, and bioinformatic analysis. NGD is based in the US and has another subsidiary in Cambridge, UK. 

 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.