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BUSINESS
By TRICIA BISHOP and TRICIA BISHOP,SUN REPORTER | August 9, 2006
Digene Corp. of Gaithersburg announced yesterday record revenue for the quarter ending June 30, closing the books on its second profitable year since its founding in 1990. The increase was led by sales of its test for HPV, a sexually transmitted disease linked to cancer. Fiscal fourth-quarter revenue was $43.3 million, a 34 percent increase over sales in the corresponding quarter last year. For the year, revenue was $152.9 million, a 33 percent increase over fiscal 2005. Income for the quarter was $3 million versus a loss of $3.8 million in the fourth quarter of fiscal year 2005.
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BUSINESS
By Tricia Bishop and Tricia Bishop,sun reporter | June 5, 2007
Dutch company Qiagen NV likely agreed to buy Gaithersburg's Digene Corp. over the weekend in a $1.6 billion deal for one main reason: to get its hands on the local company's HPV Test, which detects a cancer-causing virus. The acquisition puts Qiagen at the forefront of what analysts are calling one of the hottest areas in biotechnology. Known as molecular diagnostics, it is a relatively new discipline that uses genetic and protein information to better diagnose infectious diseases and cancer or predispositions toward them.
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BUSINESS
August 19, 1998
Digene Corp. of Beltsville has acquired Viropath BV, a Dutch company that has been developing tests and other products for cervical cancer. The purchase was accomplished through a stock swap worth an estimated $1.5 million.Under the terms of the stock purchase agreement, Digene purchased all of the outstanding capital stock of Viropath in exchange for 181,884 shares of newly issued Digene common stock.The deal closed in July but was not disclosed until yesterday, said Charles M. Fleischman, chief financial officer for Digene.
NEWS
By Tricia Bishop and Tricia Bishop,Sun reporter | June 4, 2007
Facing increased competition for its main product - the HPV Test - and questions about its plans for growth, Gaithersburg's Digene Corp. agreed yesterday to be acquired by a foreign company in a $1.6 billion cash and stock deal designed to boost the local biotech firm's international sales effort and speed technology development. Under the agreement, Netherlands-based Qiagen N.V. would pay $61.25 for Digene shares - up to $880 million - on a first-come, first-served basis. That represents a 37 percent premium over Digene's $44.77 closing price Friday on the Nasdaq.
BUSINESS
By Julie Bell and Julie Bell,SUN STAFF | April 3, 2002
Digene Corp. said yesterday that the Food and Drug Administration has informed the company it won't approve expanded use of Digene's cervical cancer test without additional information. The FDA's request for additional information follows a recommendation made last month by an FDA advisory panel, which voted 6-2 to recommend expanded uses be approved as long as a number of conditions were met. Among other things, the panel said the company should demonstrate the test has an impact on clinical outcomes.
BUSINESS
By Mara H. Gottfried and Mara H. Gottfried,CONTRIBUTING WRITER | January 15, 2000
Gaithersburg-based Digene Corp. said yesterday that it has come to an agreement with Laboratory Corporation of America Holdings to use its HPV test, which helps detect cervical cancer in women. Vandana K. Bapna, a biotechnology analyst at Hunt Valley-based Offutt Securities, called the deal significant for Digene, a biotechnology company that focuses on DNA and RNA technology for the detection, screening and monitoring of sexually transmitted diseases. "LabCorp is one of the largest reference testing labs in the United States," Bapna said.
BUSINESS
By Julie Bell and Julie Bell,SUN STAFF | March 22, 2002
A New York company said yesterday that it has sued Digene Corp., claiming that the Gaithersburg company's increasingly popular cervical cancer test and other products infringe one of its patents. Enzo Diagnostics Inc., a unit of Farmingdale, N.Y.-based Enzo Biochem Inc., said it is seeking treble damages in the suit filed in U.S. District Court in Wilmington, Del. The lawsuit is the latest salvo in a dispute over rights to technology used in Digene's best-selling products. It comes as Digene pursues an acquisition by Massachusetts-based Cytyc Corp.
BUSINESS
By William Patalon III and William Patalon III,SUN STAFF | October 15, 2004
Digene Corp. said yesterday that it will pay Enzo Biochem Inc. at least $30.5 million to settle a long-standing patent dispute involving technology used in its premier product, a test for human papillomavirus, or HPV. The virus is the primary cause of cervical cancer. Digene's HPV test is winning widespread acceptance as a screening tool in conjunction with the traditional Pap smear. The company reported HPV test sales grew 46 percent last year to $74.5 million. Gaithersburg-based Digene said settlement of the lawsuit, which had been pending in U.S. District Court in Delaware, will allow the company to focus on its future.
BUSINESS
By Mark Guidera and Mark Guidera,SUN STAFF | June 18, 1997
Digene Corp. said yesterday that it is in discussions with the Mexican Ministry of Health for a contract to supply its new test for monitoring HIV patients to a public health program.The possibility of the deal is the result of recent 90-day clinical evaluations by Mexican health officials in which a number of companies' HIV tests were reviewed. Digene's test was rated the most reliable and easiest to use, the company said.The announcement drove Digene shares up 37.5 cents yesterday to close at $12.375.
BUSINESS
By Gus G. Sentementes and Gus G. Sentementes,SUN STAFF | February 7, 2002
Digene Corp., a maker of medical diagnostic tests, said yesterday that strong sales of its cervical cancer tests drove its quarterly revenue up 49 percent as its net loss decreased 32 percent. Revenue climbed $11.6 million in the Gaithersburg company's fiscal second quarter, which ended Dec. 31, compared with $7.8 million in the year-earlier period. Digene posted a net loss of $1.1 million, or 6 cents per share for the quarter, meeting analysts' estimates. Digene reported a $1.6 million loss for the year-earlier quarter.
BUSINESS
By Tricia Bishop and Tricia Bishop,Sun reporter | March 7, 2007
They knew it was coming, but perhaps not quite so soon. Investors ramped up trading of Digene Corp. shares yesterday on earlier-than-expected news that a major competitor has two HPV tests under review by the Food and Drug Administration. A diagnostics division of Swiss pharmaceutical giant Roche Holdings Ltd. announced the developments, which would compete with Digene's product - the only test currently approved by the FDA. In response, Digene's stock sank $2.75, or 6.3 percent, to close at $41.04 on the Nasdaq, where it was listed among firms with the highest "unusual trading volume" for the day. Nearly 3 million shares traded hands yesterday - more than seven times the average.
BUSINESS
By Tricia Bishop and Tricia Bishop,Sun reporter | November 15, 2006
Digene Corp. announced yesterday that Daryl J. Faulkner, a biotech industry veteran, will take over as chief executive next month. Faulkner replaces the Gaithersburg company's current CEO, Evan L. Jones, who surprised colleagues and industry insiders this summer by detailing plans to retire just as the business was taking off. "There's a little sadness on my part; it's been incredible building Digene," Jones, 50, said yesterday. He took over the struggling biotechnology company in July 1990, when it had just been downsized to about 30 people, had no cash to speak of and sales of less than $1 million.
BUSINESS
By Tricia Bishop and Tricia Bishop,Sun reporter | November 3, 2006
Driven by a 47 percent increase in worldwide sales of a test that identifies a cancer-causing virus in women, Digene Corp. yesterday reported record fiscal first-quarter results and raised financial guidance for its fiscal year 2007, which ends in June. Revenue for the Gaithersburg biotech was up 38 percent to $46.1 million for the quarter ending Sept. 30, compared with $33.4 million in the corresponding quarter of 2005. Profit nearly quadrupled to $5.1 million from $1.3 million last year.
BUSINESS
By TRICIA BISHOP and TRICIA BISHOP,SUN REPORTER | June 30, 2006
Hours after announcing his running mate, Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. took her on the road to drum up support. Their first stop? The Jewish Community Center in Rockville. And later: Digene Corp., a Gaithersburg biotech that makes a test that looks for a cancer-causing sexually transmitted disease. "We do not lead the world without leaders like this," Ehrlich said of the company's management. Nearby sat Maryland Secretary of Disabilities Kristen Cox, the governor's newly identified pick to run as his lieutenant governor.
BUSINESS
June 10, 2006
Maryland: Technology Digene leaders get stock incentives In what appears to be an effort to keep its management staff from following the chief executive out the door, Digene Corp. of Gaithersburg has awarded restricted stock units to five senior executives "for the purpose of providing retention incentive compensation," according to a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission yesterday. Digene also promoted a vice president of sales and marketing to senior vice president and agreed that he could retain his position for two years or receive compensation if a change in control occurs.
BUSINESS
By TRICIA BISHOP and TRICIA BISHOP,SUN REPORTER | June 8, 2006
When it first appeared that a vaccine under development by New Jersey's Merck & Co. could one day wipe out the two virus strains that cause 70 percent of cervical cancer -- a vaccine that the Food and Drug Administration is expected to approve today -- many in the medical world rejoiced. But the initial reaction from one Maryland company about the first-ever cancer immunization was a little different. Digene Corp. panicked. The Gaithersburg business had spent more than a dozen years developing a screening test that looked for dangerous versions of the same sexually transmitted virus, known as the human papilloma virus or HPV, with the intent of identifying infection so women could get early preventive treatment.
BUSINESS
By Julie Bell and Julie Bell,SUN STAFF | February 2, 2002
Digene Corp. said yesterday that it paid Abbott Laboratories $2.5 million in stock to reacquire the rights to diagnostic tests for two sexually transmitted diseases. The Gaithersburg company said that getting back the rights to its chlamydia and gonorrhea tests eventually will allow it to "bundle" them with its HPV test for cervical cancer. The move ultimately may increase both revenue for the company and convenience for women, allowing all three tests to be run from one patient sample.
BUSINESS
By Tricia Bishop and Tricia Bishop,SUN STAFF | March 20, 2005
The women's faces flash by, their expressions shifting from earnest to bewildered to confident. "Why didn't I know that?" one of them asks. "Everyone we know should know," says another. The commercial, launched this month by Gaithersburg-based Digene Corp., shows five women in their 30s, in what appears to be a New York-style loft. The ad implies that their regular gynecological routines are not enough. Women might be imperiling themselves, it suggests, if they don't use Digene's test for human papillomavirus, the sexually transmitted virus known as HPV. "If your Pap test is normal, you don't have to worry about cervical cancer, right?"
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