Roche buys U.S. diagnostics company IQuum in $450 million deal

ZURICH, April 7 Mon Apr 7, 2014 1:19am EDT

ZURICH, April 7 (Reuters) - Swiss drugmaker Roche has agreed to buy privately-held U.S. diagnostics company IQuum in a deal worth up to $450 million to strengthen its molecular diagnostics business.

The Basel-based firm said it will pay IQuum shareholders $275 million upfront and up to $175 million in contingent product-related milestones.

"With IQuum, we further strengthen our molecular diagnostics offerings with cutting-edge technology and products that serve the point of care segment," said Roland Diggelmann, head of Roche's diagnostics division, in a statement on Monday. (Reporting by Caroline Copley; Editing by Christopher Cushing)