Essen Instruments Forms Strategic Alliance with OriGene Technologies

Essen Instruments Inc. and OriGene Technologies, Inc. today announced a strategic alliance to co-develop ion channel cell lines. Essen, based in Ann Arbor Michigan, is a leading provider of life science products and services, including ion channel discovery and safety assays. OriGene, headquartered in Rockville, Maryland, specializes in the creation and supply of gene-centric products, and has a collection of over 30,000 human full length cDNA clones.

Under the terms of the agreement, OriGene will clone and engineer ion channel genes into suitable constructs and optimize methods for expression in mammalian cell lines. Essen will use its expertise in ion channel functional analysis, including planar array electrophysiology and optical imaging, to select and characterize these lines. The end products will be co-marketed by the two companies. Commenting on the agreement, Kirk Schroeder, President of Essen Instruments said ‘We are delighted with this partnership – coupling OriGene’s first in class molecular biology capability with Essen’s ion channel expertise creates a powerful synergy for expanding our reagent catalogue’. Wei-Wu He, CEO of OriGene added ‘This partnership adds significant momentum to our stable cell line development services’.

Financial terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

Essen Instruments is a leading product and service provider in the life science research field with a long history of innovation. Products invented by Essen personnel include the first high throughput cell-based assay platform, FLIPR; the first high throughput planar electrophysiology platform on the market, IonWorks and the first live-cell imaging system to fit inside a standard cell culture incubator, IncuCyte. Essen also has a discovery services group, offering ion channel assays and mechanistic profiling as well as novel kinetic angiogenesis, cell migration and cell proliferation assays. The services group is managed and comprised of scientists who have previously driven drug discovery projects at major pharmaceutical companies. This combination of drug discovery and instrumentation experience makes Essen a unique provider of life science research tools and services.

OriGene Technologies, Inc., is a gene centric life sciences tool company dedicated to support academic, pharmaceutical and biotech companies in their research of gene functions and drug discovery. OriGene’s novel product line includes the world’s largest cDNA and shRNA clone collections, over 5,000 purified human proteins, high quality monoclonal antibodies to human proteins, 100,000 highly validated human tissues, and qPCR arrays. OriGene also provides a broad range of antibody validation products including genome-wide tagged antigen standards and extensive IHC slides derived from our tissue collection. OriGene is committed to its mission to be "Your Gene Company", in supplying everything a researcher would need for gene based research.

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