Sysmex Corp, Kobe, Japan, has signed an agreement to acquire Oxford Gene Technology (OGT), Oxford, UK.

Sysmex will acquire all of OGT’s shares, gaining access to OGT’s genetic analysis technologies and expertise in the cytogenetics domain. OGT will become a wholly owned subsidiary of Sysmex. Further terms of the agreement are not being disclosed.

Sysmex develops, produces, and sells integrated instruments, reagents, and software used in in vitro diagnostics, specifically within the fields of hematology, hemostasis, and urinalysis. Acquisition of OGT will enable Sysmex to enter the cytogenetics market with fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) and array comparative genomic hybridization (CGH) products. The acquisition also aims to strengthen Sysmex’s technology base in molecular genetics through OGT’s next-generation sequencing (NGS) reagent development capabilities. The acquisition of OGT expands Sysmex’s life science business and reinforces its initiatives toward personalized medicine.

In the 2016 fiscal year, OGT recorded sales of £19.7 million, primarily from its fully integrated molecular genetics product portfolio of Cytocell FISH probes, SureSeq NGS products, and CytoSure microarray products, which together grew by 30% last year.

“We are delighted to become part of such a well-regarded organization and truly believe that the opportunities arising from joining a large global corporation like Sysmex will be transformational for OGT, its employees and customers,” says Sir Edwin Southern, PhD, founder of OGT.

Research and development teams from OGT and Sysmex will collaborate to develop an automated system for FISH testing by combining Sysmex’s automation technology with OGT’s FISH reagent development expertise.

In addition, the companies expect that adding OGT’s array CGH and NGS capabilities will further expand opportunities for genetic testing in the field of rare diseases and liquid biopsies.

“Alongside the exciting product development opportunities already identified, there are a number of beneficial commercial synergies that will expand market access for OGT’s products, putting us at the forefront of molecular genetics,” says Mike Evans, DPhil, CEO of OGT. “We are looking forward to the next chapter in our development as part of Sysmex.”