Abbott Laboratories and Celera Diagnostics Form Alliance to Develop and Market Molecular Diagnostic Products
Alliance to capitalize on extensive discovery effort to identify new diagnostic markers for disease
Celera Diagnostics to hold conference call at 10 a.m. (ET) Tuesday, June 25
Abbott Park, IL and Alameda, CA - June 24, 2002
Abbott Laboratories (NYSE:ABT) and Celera Diagnostics, a joint venture between the Applied Biosystems Group (NYSE:ABI), and the Celera Genomics Group (NYSE:CRA) of Applera Corporation, today announced a long-term strategic alliance to develop, manufacture and market a broad range of in vitro molecular diagnostic products for disease detection, disease progression monitoring and therapy selection.
The alliance, the most comprehensive in its field, plans to develop and commercialize molecular diagnostic products to detect and manage infectious diseases and chronic conditions such as cardiovascular and autoimmune diseases, central nervous system disorders and cancer. Approximately 250 scientists and engineers from the two companies will initially be devoted to the program, which will encompass a large-scale discovery effort to identify new diagnostic markers. Celera Diagnostics will focus primarily on genetic marker discovery, new marker validation and assay development. Abbott will focus on product development, sales and marketing - serving as the worldwide distributor for most products developed by the alliance.
Under the terms of the agreement, Abbott and Celera Diagnostics will share both profits and expenditures related to research, development, manufacture and commercialization of new molecular diagnostic products. All relevant Abbott and Applera technologies and patents will be available to the alliance, including instrumentation from Applied Biosystems and genomic data and analytical tools from Celera Genomics. A joint review board composed of members from both companies will manage the alliance. Alliance activities will not include the development or commercialization of proteins, immunoassays or products in the research or pharmaceutical market. Other terms of the arrangement were not disclosed.
"This alliance complements Abbott's capabilities and enables us to access Celera Diagnostics' expertise in genomics discovery as well as other Applera capabilities and technologies critical to ensure success," said Edward Michael, Vice President, Commercial Operations, Diagnostics, Abbott Laboratories. "This will help accelerate our joint strategy to develop and market a broad menu of next-generation molecular diagnostic products focused on unmet diagnostic needs."
"Our mutual goal is break-through products leading to earlier detection of life-threatening diseases, and improved selection of effective treatments," said Kathy Ordońez, President, Celera Diagnostics. "Our collaboration with Abbott is expected to speed the successful commercialization of new molecular diagnostic products that realize the potential from the mapping of the human genome and the large-scale disease association studies already on-going at Celera Diagnostics."
Molecular-based diagnostic tests identify genetic information associated with human disease, and can help predict and monitor individual patient responses to therapies. The $1 billion molecular diagnostic market is growing at the industry's highest rate - more than 25 percent per year.
Celera Diagnostics Conference Call & Webcast
A conference call hosted by Celera Diagnostics and Applera Corporation executives will be held June 25, at 10:00 a.m. (ET) to discuss this announcement. Investors, securities analysts, and representatives of the media who would like to participate should dial (+1) 877.224.6685 (code "Celera Diagnostics") between 9:45 a.m. and 10:00 a.m. This conference call will also be webcast. Interested parties who wish to listen to the webcast should visit either www.appliedbiosystems.com and go to the Investor Relations web page within the "About Us" section of the web site, or www.celera.com and go to the Investor section. A digital recording will be available two hours after the completion of the conference call from June 25 to July 2, 2002. Interested parties in the US/Canada should call (+1) 800.642.1687 and other international parties should call (+1) 706.645.9291 and enter Conference ID 4620341.
About Abbott Laboratories
Abbott Laboratories is a global, broad-based health care company devoted to the discovery, development, manufacture and marketing of pharmaceuticals, nutritionals, and medical products, including devices and diagnostics. In addition to its work in molecular diagnostics, Abbott is a global leader in in vitro immunodiagnostics and offers a broad range of innovative instrument systems and tests across key segments of the global diagnostics market, including hospitals, reference labs, blood banks, physician offices, clinics and consumers. The company employs approximately 70,000 people and markets its products in more than 130 countries. In 2001, the company's sales and net earnings were $16.3 billion and $2.9 billion, respectively, with diluted earnings per share of $1.88, excluding one-time charges. Abbott's news releases and other information are available on the company's Web site at www.abbott.com.
Additional information and video footage about Celera Diagnostics is available and can be found by visiting www.applera.com and clicking on the "Celera Diagnostics" link. Video footage can also be downloaded by visiting www.newstream.com.
About Celera Diagnostics and Applera Corporation
Celera Diagnostics is a joint venture between two Applera Corporation businesses, Applied Biosystems and Celera Genomics. Headquartered in Alameda, CA, Celera Diagnostics focuses on discovering novel genetic markers for disease and configuring these into new diagnostic tests to predict, characterize, monitor and select therapy for cardiovascular disease, auto-immunity, central nervous system disorders, and cancer. The Applied Biosystems Group develops and markets instrument-based systems, reagents, software, and contract services to the life science industry and research community. Customers use these tools to analyze nucleic acids (DNA and RNA), small molecules, and proteins to make scientific discoveries, leading to the development of new pharmaceuticals, and to conduct standardized testing. Applied Biosystems is headquartered in Foster City, CA, and reported sales of $1.6 billion during fiscal 2001. The Celera Genomics Group, located in Rockville, MD, and South San Francisco, CA, is engaged principally in integrating advanced technologies to discover and develop new therapeutics. Celera intends to leverage its genomic and proteomic technology platforms to identify drug targets and diagnostic marker candidates, and to discover novel therapeutic candidates. Its Celera Discovery SystemÔ online platform, to be marketed exclusively through the Knowledge Business of Applied Biosystems, is an integrated source of information based on the human genome and other biological and medical sources. Information about Applera Corporation, including reports and other information filed by the company with the Securities and Exchange Commission, is available at www.applera.com, or by telephoning 800.762.6923.
For Abbott: Some statements in this news release may be forward-looking statements for purposes of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Abbott cautions that these forward-looking statements are subject to risks and uncertainties that may cause actual results to differ materially from those indicated in the forward-looking statements. Economic, competitive, governmental, technological and other factors that may affect Abbott's operations are discussed in Exhibit 99.1 of our 2001 Form 10-K and in our periodic reports on Form 10-Q and Form 8-K, and are incorporated by reference. Abbott undertakes no obligation to release publicly any revisions to forward-looking statements as the result of subsequent events or developments.
For Celera Diagnostics: Certain statements in this press release are forward-looking. These may be identified by the use of forward-looking words or phrases such as "believe," "expect," "plan," and "should," among others. These forward-looking statements are based on Applera Corporation's current expectations. The Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 provides a "safe harbor" for such forward-looking statements. In order to comply with the terms of the safe harbor, Applera notes that a variety of factors could cause actual results and experience to differ materially from the anticipated results or other expectations expressed in such forward-looking statements. These factors include but are not limited to (1) unproven ability of Celera Diagnostics and Abbott to successfully manage and operate the alliance; (2) uncertainty in obtaining intellectual property protection for inventions made by the alliance, and uncertainty in obtaining any necessary third party intellectual property licenses; (3) unproven ability of the alliance to discover, develop, and commercialize diagnostic products; (4) unproven use of genomics information to develop diagnostic products; (5) uncertainty as to whether the alliance will be able to obtain any required regulatory approval of its diagnostic products; (6) uncertainty of market acceptance of the alliance's products; (7) possibility of delays in making Celera Diagnostics' manufacturing facility fully operational and unproven ability to scale up manufacturing as product sales increase; (8) availability and pricing of certain raw materials and equipment; and (9) other factors that might be described from time to time in Applera's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. All information in this press release is as of the date of the release, and Applera does not undertake any duty to update this information, including any forward-looking statements, unless required by law.
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