Merck KGaA’s North American unit established a Fertility Technologies division with the launch of its hand-held witnessing device for the facilitation of in vitro fertilization procedures.
EMD Serono is the German company’s biopharmaceutical business in the U.S. and Canada. The new device, dubbed Gidget, helps embryologists make sure that gametes and embryos are correctly matched in IVF, according to a statement. It offers electronic witnessing, visual lab workflow management and support for traceability and audit reporting, EMD Serono said in the statement.
"The goal for our fertility technologies portfolio is to bring new, innovative solutions to in vitro fertilization (IVF) laboratories, ultimately aiming for better outcomes for patients facing infertility through automated devices designed to improve standardization and consistency,” said Subhrangshu Datta, EMD Serono’s senior business director of Fertility Technologies, in the statement.
The Fertility Technologies launch expands on Merck KGaA’s global partnership with Australian IVF tech specialist Genea Biomedx, inked in May last year. The deal granted Merck KGaA with the global marketing and commercialization rights to Genea’s portfolio. As for EMD Serono’s own existing fertility products, the company already markets three injectable hormones for fertility treatment: Gonal-f, Cetrotide and the Ovidrel PreFilled Syringe. It plans to debut more fertility products next year.
"The creation of our Fertility Technologies division is a natural extension of EMD Serono’s legacy in the area of fertility treatment, and while we remain absolutely committed to offering medications, we also know that innovation beyond drugs is a key to try and help maximize the chances of fertility treatment success," Datta told FierceMedicalDevices via email.
In addition to fertility, EMD Serono also has a metabolic endocrinology division, which offers Serostim, an injectable for HIV-positive patients to increase lean body mass and body weight and Saizen, for the treatment of growth hormone deficiency. It also markets Rebif, a treatment for relapsing forms of multiple sclerosis and is cultivating a pipeline of cancer drugs.