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QIAGEN Extends Portfolio

Zacks Equity Research

Global provider of molecular sample and assay technologies, QIAGEN N.V. (QGEN) remains committed to technological advancement and new product introductions as exhibited by its recent launch of a new DNA test to ensure fast and reliable food testing in Europe.

The company’s new DNA test can identify even finest traces of horsemeat in food items within four hours. This is a marked improvement over the earlier testing time of two days for a similar test.

QIAGEN has the widest range of real-time PCR test across the industry. Its new test perfectly complements the company’s current menu of over 30 different food safety tests.

QIAGEN’s latest test can be implemented across Europe to improve food surveillance systems. The company’s quick and reliable DNA test is a stark contrast from the common test methods in Europe in use at present – ELISA test for proteins and end-point PCR test for DNA. While both test are inconvenient and lack common test standards, ELISA also cannot be used for processed food.

The DNA test is likely to address the ongoing problem of testing the authenticity of raw and processed foods in Europe. Further, it also standardizes testing across Europe.

Concerns about food safety and authenticity prompted the company to address the issue in the interest of the consumer. Considering the utility of this new DNA test, we are optimistic that it will garner incremental revenues for the company.

The stock carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). While we remain on the sidelines for QIAGEN, other healthcare stocks such as Abaxis (ABAX), Covidien (COV) and Conceptus (CPTS) warrant a look. These stocks carry a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).

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