News Feature | April 8, 2014

Roche Acquires IQuum For Up To $450 Million

By Estel Grace Masangkay

Roche announced its acquisition of IQuum, Inc., a privately held company centered on developing point of care offers for the molecular diagnostics market. IQuum is based in Marlborough, Massachusetts, USA.

The Basel-based company will pay IQuum shareholders an upfront $275 million and up to $175 million in contingent product related milestones.

Shuqi Chen, CEO and founder of IQuum, said, “We are very excited to continue developing innovative molecular diagnostics solutions as part of the Roche Molecular Diagnostics team. Roche is the ideal company to deliver on the promise of our point of care molecular diagnostics technology. We are fully committed to the continued success of IQuum’s employees, products, and pipeline.”

IQuum develops novel biological sample testing platform that offers breakthrough benefits to a broad cross section of the bioassay market. Using the company’s technology, non-specialized personnel can perform more sophisticated biological sample testing with greater speed in any setting.

The acquisition provides Roche access to the Laboratory-in-a-tube (Liat) System. Liat allows healthcare workers to perform rapid molecular diagnostic testing in a point of care setting. The system allows closer patient testing with minimal training. The first tests available on the system, the Liat Analyzer and Liat Influenza A/B Assay, are able to produce reliable and accurate lab-like results. Both are CE marked and FDA cleared for use.

Roland Diggelmann, COO of Roche Diagnostics, said, “With IQuum, we further strengthen our molecular diagnostics offerings with cutting-edge technology and products that serve the point of care segment. Patients will benefit from on-the-spot and accurate diagnoses, which will allow healthcare professionals to make rapid, informed treatment decisions in flexible settings. We welcome IQuum’s employees, who will continue to focus on the development and manufacturing of the Liat Analyzer and assays.”

Once the transaction is closed, Roche will integrate IQuum into its Molecular Diagnostics division.