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WaferGen and Integrated BioBank of Luxembourg (IBBL) Sign Strategic Agreement for Molecular Diagnostic Research Collaboration and Purchase of SmartChip System

FREMONT, Calif. and LUXEMBOURG, Dec. 16, 2010 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- WaferGen Biosystems, Inc. (OTC Bulletin Board: WGBS), a leading developer of state-of-the-art genomic analysis systems, and the Integrated BioBank of Luxembourg (IBBL) today announced an agreement to establish a strategic relationship that will expand the use of the WaferGen SmartChip Real-Time PCR system throughout Europe and advance personalized medicine.  

The agreement includes:

  • The purchase of a SmartChip Real-Time PCR system by IBBL to provide genomic analysis services for its own research programs and to other groups in Europe.  IBBL will use the SmartChip system for discovery and validation of gene expression patterns (biomarkers) on a single platform.
  • The two organizations will co-develop molecular signatures for filing and approval in Europe for diagnostic research and commercial applications, based on the planned International Organization for Standardization (ISO) status of IBBL.
  • The two organizations will pursue a research partnership in cancer and other areas of interest with the goal of furthering the development of treatment and therapies.
  • The two organizations will offer SmartChip Gene-Expression Profiling services in Europe using the SmartChip system.

  • In addition, WaferGen will establish its European Headquarters at the IBBL facilities in the very near future.  WaferGen is locating its European Headquarters in Luxembourg as part of an agreement with the Luxembourg Government, which has recently launched a biomedical initiative to harness genomics technologies for the study of human health problems and grow Luxembourg's personalized medicine capabilities.

    "IBBL requires an analytical product that is quantitative, reproducible and provides high sample throughput at a reasonable cost," said Dr. Robert A. Phillips, Chief Executive Officer, IBBL.  "With the SmartChip system's ability to run hundreds of samples or thousands of genes on a single chip, we can perform signature validation in just two hours, which means faster cycle times and reduced costs."

    Alnoor Shivji, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, WaferGen, said, "This strategic relationship with IBBL, a world class biobank that collects, analyzes and stores samples, enables WaferGen to access best-annotated patient samples for future diagnostic products.  It also establishes a beach-head in Europe to unlock the short- and long-term revenue potential of the WaferGen SmartChip system."

    About the Integrated BioBank of Luxembourg (IBBL)The IBBL is a newly founded independent, not-for-profit biobank designed to promote new, high quality research in Luxembourg and to bring the next generation of healthcare to the citizens of Luxembourg. As a world class EU biobank, the IBBL will provide a wide variety of the highest quality samples alongside cutting-edge technology in order to stimulate the development of new biotechnology companies to Luxembourg.  

    The mission of the IBBL is to be an international center of excellence for biobanking, a leader in biospecimen research and a partner in the introduction of personalized medical care in Luxembourg. The IBBL partners with globally recognized research centers to deliver world-class medical research in personalized medicine, and to address the most critical health issues affecting populations in Luxembourg and around the world. For additional information, please visit

    About WaferGen and the SmartChip Real-Time PCR SystemWaferGen Biosystems, Inc. is a leader in the development, manufacture and sale of state-of-the-art systems for genomic analysis for the life science and pharmaceutical industries.  The company currently offers the breakthrough SmartChip Real-Time PCR system, the next-generation Real-Time PCR system for discovery and validation of biomarkers, or gene expression patterns, on a single platform. The company believes that SmartChip is ideal for researchers seeking to confirm discoveries made with the growing use of next-generation sequencing.  In addition, the high throughput capabilities of the SmartChip system enable researchers to extend their research across large panels of genes, and hundreds of samples, at a very reasonable cost.

    Combined with next-generation chemistry and optimized assays being developed by WaferGen under the guidance of David Gelfand, Ph.D., Chief Scientific Officer and one of the pioneers of PCR, the SmartChip system is designed to provide accurate, highly sensitive and high-throughput gene expression profiling capabilities to researchers, clinicians and pharmaceutical companies.

    In addition, the company offers an innovative fee-based service for gene-expression profiling using the SmartChip system.  For additional information, please see

    Forward-Looking Statements This press release contains certain "forward-looking statements".  Such statements include statements relating to the expected benefits of the SmartChip Real-Time PCR system with respect to next generation sequencing and health care costs, statements relating to the expected benefits and advantages of the SmartChip service for gene-expression research, statements relating to the expected benefits and advantages of the SmartChip technology to other applications, statements relating to the potential new markets for the company and other statements relating to future events are not historical facts, including statements which may be preceded by the words "intends," "may," "will," "plans," "expects," "anticipates," "projects," "predicts," "estimates," "aims," "believes," "hopes," "potential" or similar words.

    Forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future performance, are based on certain assumptions and are subject to various known and unknown risks and uncertainties, many of which are beyond the control of the company.  Actual results may differ materially from the expectations contained in the forward-looking statements.  Factors that may cause such differences include the risks that: (i) the company may be unsuccessful in commercially developing its products or in achieving market acceptance of new and relatively unproven technologies; (ii) the company will need to raise additional capital to meet its business requirements in the future and the company may not be able to do so on reasonable terms or at all; (iii) the company's proprietary intellectual property rights may not adequately protect its products and technologies; and (iv) the company expects intense competition in its target markets, including from companies that have much greater resources than the company, and there can be no assurance that the company will be able to compete effectively.  More detailed information about the company and the risk factors that may affect the realization of forward-looking statements is set forth in the company's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including the company's Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2009 and the most recent Form 10-Q.  Investors and security holders are urged to read this document free of charge on the SEC's web site at  The company does not undertake to publicly update or revise its forward-looking statements as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.Contacts:WaferGen510-651-4450Don Huffman, CFOdon.huffman@wafergen.comJoyce Strandjoyce.strand@wafegen.comIBBL+352 27 44 64 24Arnaud d'Agostini, Communications

    SOURCE WaferGen Biosystems, Inc.
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