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Agilent buys Cork’s Luxcel Biosciences

16 Jan 2018

R&D expansion provides competencies in biosensor chemistry and analytical bioassaying.

Life sciences and industrial diagnostics company Agilent Technologies has acquired Cork, Ireland-based Luxcel Biosciences, a developer of real-time fluorescence plate-reader based in vitro cell assay kits.

This latest acquisition expands Agilent's cell analysis portfolio with the addition of easy-to-use assay kits that are compatible with industry standard plate-readers. Financial terms of the deal were not released.

Todd Christian, General Manager of Agilent's Cell Analysis Division, commented, "Technological advancements allowing researchers to examine cell health and function kinetically and in real-time are driving global demand for complete cell analysis solutions.

Luxcel's assay kits are optimized for standard fluorescent plate readers for broad customer application helping to address this growing demand."

Building on the success of MitoXpress Xtra Oxygen Consumption Assay, Luxcel Biosciences, which is now a part of Agilent, has created and is rapidly growing a one-stop-shop of in vitro cell-based assay tests and kits, targeting cell metabolism, drug safety and hypoxia / oxidative stress for the life sciences markets.

These 96- and 384-well microtitre-based fluorescence assays measure essential cellular metabolic pathways, and are configured for use on standard fluorescence plate readers, providing easy-to-use solutions for basic research, drug discovery and safety toxicology.

About Luxcel

Luxcel Biosciences is an award-winning developer of innovative optical fluorescence test solutions, used by scientists and technicians from universities to global Pharmaceutical Companies, with a proven ability to transform existing specialized tests, into affordable and easy-to-use products.

The company is developing a portfolio of in vitro cell-based assay kits and solutions targeting cell metabolism, drug safety and toxicity, as well as hypoxia and oxidative stress for a variety of life science customers from research institutions to pharmaceutical companies. Scientists use this technology to understand the roll of cell metabolism across a variety of important research areas including cancer, metabolic disorders, cardiovascular disease, immunology, and infectious disease.

Agilent first entered the cell analysis market in 2015 with the acquisition of Seahorse Bioscience, a developer of specialized instruments and live-cell, kinetic assays. "Luxcel is complementary to our Seahorse offerings," commented Christian. "With this acquisition, we further extend our leadership in live-cell, kinetic assays accelerating our expansion into pharmaceutical and biopharma discovery and in vitro toxicology screening applications."

Richard Fernandes, CEO of Luxcel, said, "We are a young and motivated group. When Agilent approached us, it was clear to me that we have a shared passion for innovation designed to enable and support customers. Together, we have the potential to accelerate new product introductions by leveraging Agilent's R&D and global commercial infrastructures with our biosensor chemistries and assay development expertise."

Founded in 2002 by Richard Fernandes and Dmitri Papkovsky as a spin out company from University College Cork and a member of the High Potential Start Up program at Enterprise Ireland, Luxcel has 12 employees. The Luxcel team will remain in Cork and form a dedicated sensor chemistries and bioassay solutions group within Agilent's Cell Analysis Division.

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