Source: © Robert Mizerek -
Source: © Robert Mizerek -

Cancer Genetics (CGI) said today it plans to acquire Gentris, in an up-to-$6.25 million deal that the buyer said will significantly expand its client base beyond oncology diagnostics, through added capabilities in genomic profiling for clinical trials as well as in pharmacogenomics.

“We view this acquisition as part of our long-range strategic plan to deepen our capabilities in developing unique and individualized treatment insights in oncology,” Cancer Genetics CEO Panna Sharma said in a statement. “Gentris will add immediate incremental revenue and, through its established client base and relationships, will give us tremendous access to the biotech and pharmaceutical communities.”

CGI said it signed a nonbinding letter of intent to acquire privately held Gentris. The deal is expected to close in the third quarter of this year, subject to a definitive acquisition agreement and related documents, as well as customary closing conditions and government approvals.

Once CGI closes on the Gentris acquisition, and a planned $1.9 million acquisition of BioServe India announced last month, Sharma said, Cancer Genetics will have about 60,000 square feet of lab space for oncology focused patient testing and biopharma trials globally: “This global footprint will allow us to partner with biotech and pharma customers and access innovations through a network of global collaborations and development initiatives.”

Founded in 2001, Gentris provides pharmacogenomics, genotyping, and biorepository services to the pharmaceutical and biotech industries. Gentris partners with pharmaceutical, academic and technology clients to help them effectively integrate pharmacogenomics into their drug development and clinical trial programs, with the goals of delivering safer, more effective drugs to market more quickly.

Publicly traded CGI said it will fully integrate Gentris’ more than 40 employees, including its founder, and Gentris’ facilities. Gentris is headquartered in Morrisville, NC, and last year opened an FDA-compliant satellite laboratory focused on genomic biomarker testing and biorepository services in Shanghai’s Zhangjiang Hi-Tech Park.

As part of the deal, a Gentris founder and board member, Michael P. Murphy, will serve as general manager as CGI integrates the Raleigh facility. Howard McLeod, PharmD, a Gentris board member and director who also serves as medical director at the DeBartolo Family Personalized Medicine Institute at the University of South Florida Moffitt Cancer Center, will join CGI’s Scientific Advisory Board.

CGI agreed to shell out $4.75 million—to consist of $3.25 million cash and $1.5 million in stock—as well as an additional $1.5 million tied to unspecified performance.

“By combining our expertise with Cancer Genetics, we expand the opportunity to service the large, global pharmaceutical companies that already are our customers and also bring together the analysis of somatic and germline genetic changes that drive cancer growth and treatment response,” added Tim Gupton, chairman and board member of Gentris. 

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