BioTrove, Cisbio enter screening services distribution deal

Companies will combine Cisbio’s HTRF with BioTrove’s RapidFire mass spec platform

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WOBURN, Mass.—BioTrove Inc. and Cisbio Bioassays announced last month at LabAutomation2009 that the two companies have entered into a distribution agreement to offer a broad range of screening services to pharma and biotech customers. Under the co-exclusive deal, Cisbio will offer BioTrove's RapidFire High-Throughput Mass Spectrometry (RF-MS) screening service as a label-free detection method for assay development and drug screening, in conjunction with its HTRF (Homogeneous Time-Resolved Fluorescence) technology and services.
 RapidFire services will be performed by BioTrove at its screening facility.

"For both [companies'] portfolios, this combination made sense because there was so little overlap and the two services are so obviously complementary," says Matt Marano, RapidFire market development director. "Our bread-and-butter has been those kinds of assays and targets that aren't amenable to optimal screening technologies—targets that are involved in fatty acid metabolism and lipid metabolism, the metabolic disease targets, vascular disease targets and some inflammation targets—that had been problematic."

Through its sales organization covering the United States, Cisbio will offer RapidFire mass spectrometry-based screening and analysis service as part of its HTRF drug discovery screening services portfolio, which it offers from its facility in Bedford, Mass., just minutes from BioTrove's home office.

"Our technical and sales [staff] will be promoting RapidFire services throughout the U.S.," notes Francois Degorce, head of HTRF marketing and business development for Cisbio. "We already have assay development and custom labeling services at our location here in the U.S. and it is an important part of our business. So it made sense at some point that we should collaborate."

HTRF is a highly sensitive technology for the detection of molecular interactions of proteins in vitro and is widely used for primary and secondary screening phases of drug development. It is likely that customers would use HTRF as a primary screen then turn to RapidFire for validation studies. DDN


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