© Voyagerix/Fotolia
© Voyagerix/Fotolia

Roche is acquiring Ariosa Diagnostics, a San Jose-based molecular diagnostics testing service provider that offers non-invasive prenatal testing (NIPT) through their CLIA laboratory using cell-free DNA (cfDNA) technology.

Ariosa’s Harmony Prenatal Test is designed to assess the risk of Down syndrome and other genetic abnormalities by evaluating fetal cfDNA found in maternal blood. Specifically, the test assesses the risk of trisomies 13, 18, and 21, which are indicative of an extra chromosome in the fetus that can lead to severe genetic conditions. Harmony has a less than 0.1% false-positive rate, according to the company.

“The acquisition of Ariosa is another example of Roche’s commitment to advanced molecular diagnostics,” said Roland Diggelmann, COO Roche Diagnostics Division. “Circulating cfDNA has the promise of providing early diagnostic information through a simple blood test in many important segments including pregnancy, cancer, and transplantation, aligning with our strategy in personalized healthcare and commitment to setting new standards of care.”

In April, Roche acquired IQuum to strengthen offerings in molecular diagnostics. The acquisition provided Roche with access to IQuum’s Laboratory-in-a-tube (Liat™) System, which enables healthcare workers to perform rapid molecular diagnostic testing in a point-of-care setting. 

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