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Becton Dickinson Acquires Point-of-Care Diagnostics Maker

BD Veritor reader

BD Veritor reader (Becton, Dickinson and Company)

Becton, Dickinson and Company, a medical device manufacturer in Franklin Lakes, New Jersey is buying Alverix Inc., a developer of point-of-care diagnostics equipment in San Jose, California. The purchase price is $40 million, according to a Becton Dickinson statement.

Alverix designs testing equipment for physician’s offices, retail and mobile clinics, rural settings, and homes that aim to provide the same reliability as tests performed in remote medical labs, but faster and at a lower cost. The company is a spin-off of consumer and medical electronics companies Hewlett Packard, Agilent, and Avago, founded in 2007.

Since 2008, Alverix has been an OEM supplier to Becton Dickinson’s line of BD Veritor diagnostics systems for clinical and hospital labs, as well as point-of-care applications. Becton Dickinson offers BD Veritor systems to test for influenza types A and B, group A strepococcus, adenovirus, and respiratory syncytial virus in medical labs and doctors’ offices.

BD Veritor diagnostics adapt Alverix systems that use imaging technology in a compact reader to detect antigens, with software that analyzes the images and return results in about 10 minutes. The technology, says Becton Dickinson, enhances sensitivity to antigens to reduce false negatives, while algorithms in the software distinguish between antigen and non-antigen bindings to improve the test’s specificity and reduce false positives.

Alverix’s main investors are venture capital companies New Venture Partners and Safeguard Scientifics. Safeguard says in a statement it invested some $9.4 million in Alverix since 2007, gaining a 49 percent stake in the company.  Safeguard anticipates cash proceeds of $17.4 million from the acquisition.

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