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Pfizer Acquires Genomics Companies

by 5m Editor
19 March 2008, at 10:53am

NEW YORK, US - Pfizer Animal Health today announced it will acquire two market-leading livestock genomics companies.

One of the companies, Catapult Genetics, Pty., Ltd., focused on developing and commercializing innovative livestock DNA tests and gene markers to assist global food producers, processors and retailers in improving profitability and quality in the global food chain, the other, Bovigen, LLC, markets DNA technology, including Catapult’s products in the U.S. and throughout Canada, Central America and South America.

Terms of the agreements were not disclosed. The acquisitions are expected to close by the end of this month. The two companies will continue to market products and services to their own customers as well as Pfizer Animal Health customers.

“This is a strategic initiative that places Pfizer at the forefront of livestock gene marker R&D and enhances Pfizer’s ability to offer more complete solutions to global livestock producers,” said Juan Ramon Alaix, president, Pfizer Animal Health.

Current genetic tests are focused on productivity and carcass quality, while future genetic tests may one day allow producers to better predict disease in individual animals, thus helping veterinarians and producers target medicines to livestock that need it most, Alaix said.

“Catapult’s ongoing product R&D is based on core technology platforms developed in collaboration with research groups in Australia and New Zealand,” said Gerard Davis, chief executive officer, Catapult Genetics. “Now with Pfizer’s added resources and capabilities, we expect livestock producers will begin to see an enhanced range of genetic tools. For sheep and beef cattle producers in Australia and New Zealand there will be benefits from a continued focus on their needs as well as access to new and improved products,” Davis said.

Pfizer will continue to access and draw on the best R&D from Australia, New Zealand, the U.S., and Europe. As novel marker panels are discovered and developed, Pfizer plans to introduce new products and services to livestock producers.