Thursday, June 07, 2007

Inverness Medical Takes 49% of Techlab

Inverness Medical Innovations, Inc. (Amex: IMA) announced that it will acquire 49% of the capital stock of TechLab, Inc., a privately held diagnostics company, in exchange for 303,417 shares of Inverness common stock. TechLab develops, manufactures, and distributes rapid non-invasive intestinal diagnostics tests in the areas of intestinal inflammation, antibiotic associated diarrhea and parasitology.

The transaction provides Inverness, whose Wampole subsidiary already distributes TechLab’s products in the United States, with exclusive global distribution rights to TechLab’s market leading line of enteric disease testing products, as well as future human medical diagnostic products, as Techlab’s existing global distribution relationships lapse. These products include both ELISA and rapid format assays for the detection of C. Difficile Toxins A&B, a rapidily growing world-wide market segment. TechLab works with major universities in the development of new tests for intestinal parasites for use in both industrialized and developing countries.

TechLab has developed and now, with access to Inverness’ intellectual property, expects to commence selling the only US FDA-cleared rapid membrane assay to detect fecal lactoferrin, a test that can help differentiate bacterial enteric infections and inflammatory bowel diseases from maladies such as irritable bowel syndrome and diverticulitis. In the US alone, there are over 3 million cases of Crohn’s Disease, 4 million cases of ulcerative colitis and 10 million cases of irritable bowel syndrome reported anually. Additionally, TechLab has a pipeline of products in development which represent opportunities for Inverness in both the professional and consumer marketplaces.

TechLab will continue to operate with the current executive management team of Tracy Wilkins, Ph.D. as president, David Lyerly, Ph.D. as Vice President of Research and Development and David Wall as VP of Operations.

The agreement includes an option for Inverness to acquire any shares of TechLab offered for sale to third parties by the existing shareholders.

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