Oxford Gene Technology to purchase Cytocell

Underscores commitment to become a global leader in genomic medicine

Oxford Gene Technology (OGT), a provider of innovative genetics research solutions, has bought Cambridge-based Cytocell to expand its genomic medicine offering.

Cytocell, a profitable company with sales of more than £4.5m, provides DNA technology for the detection of gene rearrangements related to inherited genetic disease and cancer.

No further financial details are being disclosed.

Cytocell’s Fluorescence In Situ Hybridisation (FISH) probes complement OGT’s CytoSure cytogenetics array and next-generation sequencing products and the market for FISH products, currently estimated to be worth US$295m, is growing at 19% per annum, according to Marketsandmarkets.

The acquisition will also grow OGT's product offering in North America. The company already has a dedicated cytogenetics sales team in the region, which will work with Cytocell’s current distributor, Rainbow Scientific, to provide an enhanced service.

The acquisition of Cytocell underscores our commitment to becoming a global leader in genomic medicine

In addition, Cytocell will strengthen OGT’s distributor network. The company currently develops and supplies in excess of 300 products to more than 60 countries through a network of distributors, apart from in the UK and Germany where it sells directly to the end user.

Cytocell’s proprietary collection of 34,000 Bacterial Artificial Chromosome clones (BAC) will also provide a source of potential new products.

Cytocell’s Managing Director, Martin Lawrie, will join OGT’s executive committee.

'The acquisition of Cytocell underscores our commitment to becoming a global leader in genomic medicine,' said Mike Evans, CEO of OGT.

'Cytocell brings to the OGT Group innovative DNA technology, an excellent team and a strong brand with a reputation for high-quality FISH products. This is a great opportunity to add to our portfolio of class-leading technologies and position ourselves for growth across new geographical markets and customer application areas.'

Lawrie added: 'This is an excellent strategic fit for both Cytocell and OGT. The aim is to continue to develop and produce our world-renowned FISH-based diagnostic products from our facility in Cambridge and take advantage of OGT’s established sales and marketing infrastructure in the US and Europe as well as its innovative science to expand the markets for these products.'