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Olympus America Licenses Digital Pathology Patents to BioImagene, Inc.

CENTER VALLEY, Pa., July 12, 2010 – Olympus America Inc. has signed a nonexclusive worldwide licensing agreement with BioImagene, Inc. of Sunnyvale, California, allowing BioImagene to access an extensive portfolio of Olympus patents in the field of digital pathology and virtual microscopy. This is the most recent of several licenses that Olympus has granted for the technologies, which are considered critical for developing future digital imaging and data handling systems for pathology. 

Digital pathology technology has the potential to change the way doctors review and manage millions of biopsy slides and other pathology specimens now handled using glass slides and traditional optical microscopes.  The patents included in the licensing deal cover methods and equipment for creating, storing and delivering virtual microscopy slides. The technology enables pathologists to view and share high-resolution virtual microscopy images over the Internet.

“The digital pathology field is evolving rapidly,” said F. Mark Gumz, President and CEO of Olympus Corporation of the Americas, the parent company of Olympus America Inc., “and allowing other companies in this field like BioImagene to license these important patents will help advance the field of pathology, and ultimately promote better access to healthcare for patients around the world.”

“Digital pathology is at an important inflexion point, moving very rapidly towards broad-based adoption. We believe that our relationship with Olympus will be a catalyst for this trend,” said Ajit Singh, Ph.D., President and CEO of BioImagene. “Olympus has been a pioneer in this field, and their patent portfolio will complement BioImagene’s innovations in end-to-end digital pathology.”

In the United States alone, $13.2 billion was spent in anatomic pathology testing during 2008, according to a 2010 Laboratory Economics report. The Olympus portfolio enables development of solutions that can streamline the review of pathology slides and improve the speed of reporting, while saving costs and enhancing patient care. Virtual microscope slide technology also has the potential to aid hospitals in moving to comprehensive patient Electronic Medical Record (EMR) systems – a transition that is already beginning in some parts of the world.

The companies are not making specific terms and conditions of the agreement public.

About Olympus Scientific Equipment Group
Olympus America Scientific Equipment Group provides innovative microscope imaging solutions for researchers, doctors, clinicians and educators. Olympus microscope systems offer unsurpassed optics, superior construction and system versatility to meet the ever-changing needs of microscopists, paving the way for future advances in life science. For more information, visit www.olympusamerica.com/microscopes

About Olympus
Olympus is a precision technology leader, creating innovative opto-digital solutions in healthcare, life science and consumer electronics products. Olympus works collaboratively with its customers and its affiliates worldwide to leverage R&D investment in precision technology and manufacturing processes across diverse business lines. These include:

  • Gastrointestinal endoscopes, accessories, and minimally invasive surgical products;
  • Advanced clinical and research microscopes;
  • Lab automation systems, chemistry-immuno and blood bank analyzers and reagents;
  • Digital cameras and voice recorders.

Olympus serves healthcare and commercial laboratory markets with integrated product solutions and financial, educational and consulting services that help customers to efficiently, reliably and more easily achieve exceptional results. Olympus develops breakthrough technologies with revolutionary product design and functionality for the consumer and professional photography markets, and also is the leader in gastrointestinal endoscopy and clinical and educational microscopes. For more information, visit www.olympusamerica.com.

About BioImagene
BioImagene (http://www.bioimagene.com) is the leading provider of innovative and scalable digital pathology solutions for diagnostics. The company's total digital pathology solution is comprised of the Virtuoso™ digital pathology application software, iScan™ family of automated digital slide scanners, and a rich menu of Companion Algorithms™. BioImagene’s innovative product line includes a unique image viewing input device called the iSlide™, and a high-performance pathology workstation called Crescendo™. BioImagene is also the platinum sponsor of PathXchange™, a vendor neutral, not-for-profit website for the pathology community.