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Sigma-Aldrich to acquire Ace Animals

The acquisition will enhance SAGE Labs’ rodent husbandry capabilities, add new models to their product portfolio and add a strategic location for US animal distribution.

Sigma-Aldrich announced recently it has signed an agreement to acquire Ace Animals Inc., a Pennsylvania-based provider of research rodents to the biomedical industry. Ace Animals, a commercial rodent breeder established in 1973, will operate as part of Sigma Advanced Genetic Engineering (SAGE) Labs, a Sigma Life Science initiative.

Terms and conditions of the agreement were not disclosed. Closing is expected shortly.

The acquisition will enhance SAGE Labs’ current rat and mouse breeding capabilities, primarily used in the development and characterization of its knockout and knock-in rat models featuring specific gene deletions, insertions, repressions and modifications created using proprietary CompoZr Zinc Finger Nuclease technology. In addition, Ace Animals’ strategic location in Pennsylvania is expected to enhance the distribution of SAGE Labs models to key sites within the United States bio-pharma industry.

Through the acquisition, SAGE Labs plans to offer a substantially increased portfolio of products and services, including several wild-type rats and mice including Swiss Webster, Sprague Dawley, ICR, Balb/c, C57BL/6 and Cotton Rats.

SAGE Labs will be able to offer contract breeding services, an extension of its current SAGEspeed animal creation service. Concurrently, Ace Animals’ customers are expected to benefit from access to the genetic engineering platforms offered through Sigma’s SAGE labs.

SAGE Labs is developing their catalogue of knockout rat models across a number of research fields, including neurobiology, toxicology, cardiology and immunology.

‘With the Ace Animals acquisition, SAGE Labs will be in a better position to offer a greater number of models with the goal of helping researchers understand the functional significance of genes and their relationships to human diseases,’ said Dr Edward Weinstein, Director of SAGE Labs. ‘ In vivo models of human disease states serve as more predictive proxies to the human condition, and therefore are instrumental to the discovery of novel and powerful therapeutics.’

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