BioTime (NYSE Amex: BTX) Subsidiary LifeMap Sciences to Acquire XenneX,
NYSE Amex:BTX and its wholly owned subsidiary LifeMap Sciences signed a definitive agreement to acquire XenneX, Inc. through a merger of XenneX into LifeMap Sciences. The acquisition is expected to close within thirty days.
- XenneX holds the exclusive, worldwide licenses to market GeneCards^® and PanDaTox. GeneCards^® is a searchable, integrated, database of human genes that provides concise genomic, transcriptomic, genetic, proteomic, functional and disease related information, on all known and predicted human genes;
- GeneCards^® was developed by a world-leading bioinformatics team at the Weizmann Institute of Science inIsrael. PanDaTox is a recently developed, searchable, database that can be used to identify genes and intergenic regions that are unclonable in E. coli, to aid in the discovery of new antibiotics and biotechnologically beneficial functional genes, and to improve the efficiency of metabolic engineering.
Since 2003, XenneX has been generating revenue from customers worldwide including biotechnology, pharmaceutical and other life sciences companies, as well as organizations dealing with biotechnology intellectual property. GeneCards^® and PanDaTox are marketed by XenneX under a license from Yeda Research and Development Company Ltd, the Technology Transfer Company of the Weizmann Institute.
- Through the merger, XenneX stockholders will receive approximately 1,362,589 shares of LifeMap common stock, which will represent approximately 13% of the LifeMap common stock outstanding upon the closing of the transaction. XenneX shareholders will also receive approximately 448,430 BTX common shares as part of the transaction.
Separately, LifeMap Sciences announced that it anticipates acquiring a license from Yeda to market the new MalaCards database of human diseases. Like GeneCards^® and PanDaTox, MalaCards has been developed by the Weizmann Institute and is expected to be launched at the end of 2012.
The Bottom Line: The field of biomedical research has expanded greatly in recent years due to the enormous growth of DNA sequencing technology, bioinformatics, and stem cell biology. The growth in research has produced a decentralized body of information. The mission of BTX’s subsidiary LifeMap Sciences is to centralize access to this information through database technology that will make it much more feasible for researchers around the world to find and utilize information about tens of thousands of genes and thousands of cell types. LifeMap’s team of scientists is building an integrated map of the thousands of cell types in human development, beginning with the fertilized egg and ending in the developed human. Combined with genomics information, the database is expected to become a “road atlas” of human biology benefiting medicine and research. In addition, LifeMap is developing its own proprietary technology to effectively analyze data gathered from the databases for use in the development of cell-based therapies. In addition to expanding LifeMap’s database offerings through the acquisition of XenneX, BTX plans to make LifeMap the principal marketing subsidiary for research products, including ACTCellerate™ human progenitor cell lines, GMP human embryonic stem (hES) cell lines, hES cell lines carrying inherited genetic diseases, and ESpan™ growth media for progenitor cell lines for non-therapeutic uses.