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Worldwide Development and Distribution agreement for an Automated Whole Blood or Blood Component Processing System

06/06/2008 - Leuven, Belgium

Terumo Europe N.V., announces it has extended its current Supply Agreement for Europe with Andreas Hettich GmbH & Co.KG, Tuttlingen into a World Wide Development and Distribution agreement for an Automated Whole Blood or Blood Component Processing system. Both companies strongly believes that technologies enabling automation and consequently standardisation of the blood component processes will have a tremendous impact on the way blood components will be produced in the Blood Services.

The New System will be marketed by Terumo under the name TACSI - Terumo Automated Centrifuge & Separator Integration. Terumo by adapting its unique blood bag systems, and Terumo together with Hettich by developing new hardware features to the original device of Hettich, are committed to offer to their customers, solutions that will enable them to increase the blood component production quality and its efficiency. Hettich, with a rich history of manufacturing laboratory centrifuges for more than 100 years, is market leader for automated laboratory centrifuges and knows the benefits of automation very well.

"While reducing the number of equipments necessary for the blood component production, automation eliminates the most sensitive manual steps in this process. Often these steps affect the quality of the components produced and lead to possible product losses." Mr. Eberle, President of Hettich said.

TACSI is designed in a first phase to automate the preparation of platelet concentrates from pooled buffy-coats. This platelet production method is mostly done manually. The technique is already well established in Western-Europe. It grows rapidly in Eastern Europe, Canada, South Africa, Latin America and Asia. We estimate about 2 million Therapeutic Platelet Concentrates are produced per year.

"TACSI shall significantly speed up the pooled platelet concentrate preparation process while it is expected to level-up the quality of the components produced. One TACSI device will handle six units at the same time. Automation shall prove itself to be cost-effective.", said President CEO of Terumo Europe NV.

The TACSI concept for pooled platelet concentrate production was well received by a large audience at the regional European ISBT congress in Madrid in June 2007. In the meantime first customers were contracted and several new contracts are imminent.

In a second phase the TACSI concept will be extended to the whole blood separation process. With this new feature TACSI shall be targeting the segment of 50 million whole blood units that are processed each year in the world. The target for the introduction of the second phase is 2010.

Through TACSI, Terumo will have in its product-portfolio a premium solution to meet the increasing needs for automation, efficiency and quality of blood component production. It is then the company firm intention to become a World Wide leader in this segment of the Transfusion Field.

About Terumo

Terumo is a global health care company dedicated to research, development, manufacturing and marketing of medical products and equipment, including pharmaceuticals, nutritional food supplement, blood bags, disposable medical devices, cardiovascular and vascular intervention systems, vascular grafts, peritoneal dialysis, blood glucose monitoring system, medical electronics, and digital thermometers. The main company vision is to contribute to the society through health care using its unique technology which makes medical treatment kinder and gentler

Terumo employs more than 12.000 people and its products are available in over 160 countries world-wide.

About Hettich

Hettich is one of the world's leading manufacturers of centrifuges based in Tuttlingen/Germany. The product portfolio includes low- and superspeed centrifuges and a broad range of accessories for applications in Research, Industrial, Clinical, Veterinary Medicine and Food areas.

For more information

Roland Biset - transfusion.systems@terumo-europe.com