CINCINNATI--(BUSINESS WIRE)--March 16, 2005--Meridian Bioscience,
Inc., (NASDAQ:VIVO) today announced that its wholly owned subsidiary,
Viral Antigens, Inc. (VAI), has entered into a Distribution Agreement
with Synbiotics Corporation for the distribution of VAI's veterinary
products through Synbiotics' global sales, marketing, and distribution
channels. Synbiotics develops, manufactures, and markets veterinary
diagnostic products for the animal health market and is seeking to
broaden its product portfolio. Synbiotics will immediately begin
marketing VAI's line of Pseudorabies Virus Antibody (PRV) test kits.
VAI will continue to supply PRV test kits directly to Japan.
Pseudorabies Virus (PRV) is a contagious swine disease that causes
reproductive problems, including abortion, stillbirths and death
losses in breeding and finishing hogs. PRV has been one of the most
costly of all swine diseases to the nation's pork producers. At its
peak in the 1990's, the cost to pork producers alone was estimated to
be $30 million annually represented in vaccination, testing, and
animal loss costs. Over the past decade, a national control and
eradication program for PRV was implemented to eliminate the presence
of PRV in the swine population. Today, vaccination, testing, and good
disease management practices are utilized to control the impact of
PRV. PRV testing has been a significant factor in the eradication of
Pseudorabies in more than 20,000 farms in the U.S. Continued
surveillance testing in the U.S. and efforts to eradicate PRV outside
the U.S. continue to be important initiatives in controlling PRV
VAI and Synbiotics will also explore additional veterinary
diagnostic product opportunities within the $700 million global animal
health diagnostic market.
Richard L. Eberly, Executive Vice President and General Manager,
Meridian Life Science, stated, "We are pleased to have developed a
close partnership with Synbiotics and believe that our combined
expertise will provide a broader portfolio of high quality products
for our global animal health customers."
Paul R. Hays, Chief Executive Officer of Synbiotics Corporation,
stated, "We are excited that the collaboration of the VAI and
Synbiotics' teams will provide our mutual customers with new and
exciting products in the future and strengthen our relationships with
them. Providing innovative products that yield value to the customer
is the key to success and having a company like VAI collaborate with
us will make new products come to fruition faster."
Meridian is a fully integrated life science company that
manufactures, markets and distributes a broad range of innovative
diagnostic test kits, purified reagents and related products and
offers biopharmaceutical enabling technologies. Utilizing a variety of
methods, these products provide accuracy, simplicity and speed in the
early diagnosis and treatment of common medical conditions, such as
gastrointestinal, viral, and respiratory infections. Meridian
diagnostic products are used outside of the human body and require
little or no special equipment. The Company's products are designed to
enhance patient well-being while reducing the total outcome costs of
healthcare. Meridian has strong market positions in the areas of
gastrointestinal and upper respiratory infections, serology,
parasitology and fungal disease diagnosis. In addition, Meridian is a
supplier of rare reagents and specialty biologicals along with
proteins and other biologicals used by biopharmaceutical companies
engaged in research for new drugs and vaccines. The Company markets
its products to hospitals, reference laboratories, research centers,
veterinary testing centers, physician offices and diagnostics
manufacturers in more than 60 countries around the world. The
Company's shares are traded through Nasdaq's National Market, symbol
VIVO. Meridian's website address is www.meridianbioscience.com.
CONTACT: Meridian Bioscience, Inc.
John A. Kraeutler, 513-271-3700
SOURCE: Meridian Bioscience, Inc.