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Axela Inc. Announces Bilateral Agreement with Diagnostic Provider Salomao and Zoppi (S&Z) and Cria Opportunities Inc.


4/20/2010 8:17:16 AM

TORONTO, April 19 /PRNewswire/ - Axela Inc, the Toronto-based producer of multiplex biomarker tools for proteins, DNA and RNA in research and diagnostics, Salomao and Zoppi (S&Z), one of the largest diagnostics providers in Sao Paulo Brazil, and innovations management firm Cria Opportunities Inc (CRIA), have signed a memorandum of understanding to commercialize Axela's technology in Brazil and South America. The new Brazilian corporation and Canada-Brazil joint venture will market Axela's existing products and utilize S&Z's extensive clinical testing experience to develop novel assays that specifically address the clinical needs of the South American market. The new entity will provide for high volume manufacturing of research and diagnostic assays that will in turn be marketed through Axela channels in the rest of the world.

The new Brazilian corporation will be located in Sao Paulo and will enjoy the booming economic environment of the largest country in South America and the ninth pharmaceutical market worldwide.

"We pride ourselves on being pioneers in adopting new technologies that can have such a significant impact on the way health care is delivered locally," said Dr. Paulo Zoppi ,Chairman and CEO of S&Z. "We are excited to be working with Axela and CRIA to support our core values of diagnosis performed with care and technical excellence."

Kito Tosetti, CRIA's president & CEO added, "This agreement creates great collaboration opportunities between the Brazilian corporation and local clinical laboratories and research institutes. It also allows the development and production of made-in-Brazil diagnostic products for local and global markets."

"This license is further evidence of the global demand for Axela's products," said Rocky Ganske, CEO of Axela Inc. "We are excited to be able to extend the use of our unique multiplex capabilities into this market, particularly in infectious disease and oncology testing. This endeavor extends our commercialization efforts worldwide and provides unique access to outstanding resources and an expanded pipeline of products for our Canadian operation."

"The combination of Cria's expertise in innovations management and S&Z in clinical validation is creating an invaluable opportunity for Axela to fast track the expansion of its diagnostic products in Brazil and in global markets," commented Dr. Guilherme Emrich, member of the National Council of Science and Technology, chaired by the President of Brazil; member of the Scientific Advisory Board on International Cooperation, established under the Brazilian Ministry of Science and Technology; and a member of Cria's advisory board.

"The enormous potential of this new venture demonstrates the formula for commercial success between Canada and Brazil. Opportunities abound when the right partners come together to harness Canadian and Brazilian expertise. This agreement is a true win-win story," stated Mary Anderson, President of the Brazil-Canada Chamber of Commerce.

About Axela Inc.:

Axela provides a powerful new approach to DNA, RNA and protein analysis that will revolutionize multiplex biomarker testing in clinical research and diagnostics. Axela's commercial research products significantly improve the amount and quality of information derived from traditional assays. This approach shortens time to result, greatly simplifies multiplexing and provides access to unique categories of markers that form a pipeline of future diagnostic offerings. Axela operates from its ISO 13485 certified facilities in Toronto and its major investor is VenGrowth Private Equity Partners Inc.

About Salomao and Zoppi: With over 1,000 employees and service providers, Salomao and Zoppi delivers over 3.6 million exams per year from five Sao Paulo sites. The company is recognized for the highest quality service in four major areas of medical diagnosis including pathological anatomy, molecular biology, imaging, and laboratory medicine.

About Cria Opportunities Inc.:

Cria specializes in innovations management and international business development, providing resources and capital for deploying ventures both in Canada and Brazil. Cria and its affiliates have successfully developed and led multi-million dollar projects in the pharmaceutical, medical device and engineering industries creating rapid expansion in new markets.

CONTACT: Kito Tosetti, President & CEO, Cria Opportunities Inc., (604)
728-7851, Vancouver, Canada, kito@criaopportunities.com,
www.criaopportunities.com; Paul Smith, VP Business Development, Axela Inc.,
(416) 260-4826, p.smith@axela.com, www.axela.com


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