UL life sciences spin-out bought for US$33.4m

29 Apr 2010

A spin-out from the University of Limerick has been bought by Life Technologies for US$33.4m. The company develops technology that radically advances life science research and molecular diagnosis.

Stokes Bio, founded in 2005 by Dr Tara Dalton and Prof Mark Davies, originated from research conducted at UL’s Stokes Research Institute, and has been sold to Life Technologies for €33.4million.

Davies is a former recipient of funding under Science Foundation Ireland’s ‘Research Frontiers Programme’, while Dalton’s close associations with SFI include the SFI-funded CTVR – Centre for Telecommunications Value-Chain Research, an SFI Centre for Science, Engineering and Technology (CSET) based at Trinity College Dublin.

In addition, Stokes Bio has also engaged extensively with another SFI CSET, BDI (the Biomedical Diagnostics Institute, based in Dublin City University), which is focused on the development of next-generation biomedical diagnostic devices.

Commenting on the landmark deal, Dr Ruth Freeman, SFI’s director of enterprise and international affairs, said: “The acquisition of Stokes Bio by Life Technologies is a personal triumph for the researchers involved and a ringing endorsement of strategic investment by SFI in high-potential research activity in this country.

“Success stories such as this are brought about by ingenuity, perseverance and, crucially, a commitment to funding research on a sustained basis through those critical initial stages of development,” Freeman said.

By John Kennedy

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years