U.S.-based multinational biotechnology organization Thermo Fisher Scientific Inc. is reportedly planning to enter into a definitive agreement to purchase Mesa Biotech Inc. for USD 550 million.
Under the agreement, Thermo Fisher Scientific will be paying around USD 450 million in cash, with an additional USD 100 million after the closure of the transaction, following certain milestones and regulatory approvals.
For the uninitiated, Mesa Biotech is a California-headquartered company that focuses on manufacturing and commercializing next-generation rapid molecular diagnostic tests. The organization aims at providing actionable information through PCR-based testing of infectious diseases including COVID-19 and respiratory syncytial virus.
Sources aware of the recent development claimed that Thermo Fisher intends to leverage Mesa Biotech’s convenient, rapid PCR-based test to cater to the escalating demand for COVID-19 testing, while parallelly working towards developing point-of-care tests for other infectious diseases.
President and CEO of Mesa Biotech, Ingo Chakravarty, was reported saying that Thermo Fisher’s global reach and vast clientele will enable the company to amplify the impact of its rapid PCR platform technology and be of significant assistance to human health amid the ongoing pandemic.
If sources are to be believed, the transaction is expected to close by the first quarter of 2021, after which Mesa Biotech will be considered a part of the business segment of Thermo Fisher’s Life Sciences Solutions.
It is also worth mentioning that Mesa Biotech had raised around USD 13 million in a funding round led by HHS's BARDA (Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority), which was aimed at developing rapid point-of-care testing kits for influenza and SARS-CoV-2.
However, the U.S. FDA (Food and Drug Administration) had recently issued an alert to healthcare providers and clinical laboratories, alleging that Mesa Biotech’s COVID-19 tests may yield false-positive results if the viral genome reflects the presence of certain mutations.
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