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HOFFMANN-LA ROCHE ACQUISITION OF PCR TECHNOLOGY COMPLETED; ROCHE AND PERKIN-ELMER FORM STRATEGIC ALLIANCE

 HOFFMANN-LA ROCHE ACQUISITION OF PCR TECHNOLOGY COMPLETED;
 ROCHE AND PERKIN-ELMER FORM STRATEGIC ALLIANCE
 NUTLEY, N.J., Dec. 11 /PRNewswire/ -- The sale of the revolutionary polymerase chain reaction (PCR) technology to Hoffman-La Roche has now been completed with yesterday's approval from Cetus Corporation stockholders and with today's payment by Roche of $300 million to Cetus for the purchase of the technology.
 As part of the agreement, Roche has formed a strategic alliance with the Perkin-Elmer Corporation, which has acquired full rights to the PCR- related instruments systems business previously shared with Cetus through the former Perkin-Elmer Cetus Instruments joint venture (PECI). Perkin-Elmer retains exclusive rights for worldwide distribution and market development of PCR systems and Roche PCR reagents in all non- diagnostic applications of the technology. Perkin-Elmer will also develop and manufacture instrument systems required in the PCR process for these same markets.
 "We greet this acquisition and our alliance with Perkin-Elmer with great enthusiasm," said Thomas P. MacMahon, president of the Diagnostics Group of Hoffmann-La Roche. "We are committed to expediting the development of PCR technology in a variety of different markets, including diagnostics, research, quality control, environmental and forensics. We will also explore uses of PCR beyond known areas to make sure the technology is utilized to its fullest."
 Riccardo Pigliucci, president of the Instrument Group of Perkin- Elmer, noted that Perkin-Elmer has been involved with PCR technology from the beginning. "The alliance with Roche represents an exciting new chapter for Perkin-Elmer as we increasingly emphasize the biotechnology market," he stated. "We look forward to playing a significant role, with Roche, in extending the applications of PCR."
 Perkin-Elmer has established itself as the leading international supplier for automated DNA amplification systems. The company has leveraged its capabilities in systems development, customer support and global marketing to address the biotechnology research, pharmaceutical, forensic, and environmental markets. In addition, Perkin-Elmer serves diverse quality control applications in chemical, plastics and food markets.
 Roche Creates New PCR Business Unit
 As a result of the purchase, Roche has formed a new operating unit for all PCR-related activities, named Roche Molecular Systems, Inc. (RMS). The unit becomes the company's third business unit in the Roche Diagnostics Group (RDG). The other two business units within RDG are Roche Biomedical Laboratories, Inc. and Roche Diagnostic Systems, Inc.
 Kathy Ordonez, formerly president of Roche Diagnostic Systems, has recently been named president of Roche Molecular Systems. Ordonez will be responsible for worldwide management of the new unit and will oversee the development, manufacture and marketing of all current and future commercial applications resulting from PCR research.
 Roche Molecular Systems will be headquartered in Branchburg, N.J., at the new U.S. RDG facility. RMS' administration, marketing, production and key research development activities will be located in Branchburg.
 In addition to the Branchburg facility, RMS will continue to maintain a significant research and development operation in Alameda, Calif. Dr. Thomas J. White, vice president of research and development, oversees operation of the facility which is home to more than 125 scientists who are dedicated to the research and development of PCR technology.
 PCR Services, Research and Development
 PCR technology allows scientists to copy a single segment of DNA millions of times, making it possible to take a specimen of genetic material weighing only one trillionth of a gram, copy its genetic sequence over and over and, within hours, generate a test sample sufficient to confirm the presence or absence of a virus or a cancer cell.
 Presently, PCR testing services are available through Roche Biomedical Laboratories for HIV (AIDS), to detect and differentiate HTLV-1 and HTLV-II, for paternity and for the identification of certain genetic diseases such as sickle cell anemia. The first commercial DNA testing service for the elusive Lyme disease bacteria is expected to be available shortly, along with tests for certain types of cancer.
 Also in development by RMS are test kits for infectious diseases, such as AIDS, tuberculosis and Lyme disease; genetic disorders, including cystic fibrosis, and cancers such as leukemias and lymphomas. RMS expects to submit several test kits for approval to the Food and Drug Administration in 1992. The worldwide distribution and sales of these products will be available exclusively through RDS.
 Hoffmann-La Roche, with worldwide headquarters in Basel, Switzerland, and U.S. headquarters in Nutley, N.J., is a world leader in original research and development in the health care field with businesses in pharmaceuticals, diagnostics and vitamins and fine chemicals.
 Perkin-Elmer Corporation (NYSE: PKN), Norwalk, Conn., is a world market leader in research, analysis and monitoring systems for biotechnology, chemistry and the environment, and a global supplier of high performance coatings.
 -0- 12/11/91
 /CONTACT: Paula Evangelista of Hoffmann-La Roche, 201-235-5929, or Julianne A. Grace of Perkin-Elmer, 203-834-4781, or Katharine Russell of Cetus Corporate Communications, 510-420-3227/
 (PKN CTUS) CO: Hoffman-La Roche Inc.; Cetus Corporation; Perkin-Elmer Corp. ST: New Jersey, Connecticut, California IN: MTC SU: TNM


PS -- NY079 -- 1697 12/11/91 18:32 EST
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Date:Dec 11, 1991
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