Hologic said this week it completed the $85 million acquisition of digital specimen radiography company Faxitron Bioptics.
The takeover adds X-ray devices and other equipment used in the treatment of early-stage breast cancer to Hologic’s portfolio.
Hologic will sell the devices alongside its existing breast cancer products, giving it a portfolio that covers multiple steps in the breast-conservation procedure.
Surgeons used to take an aggressive approach to all stages of breast cancer. However, over the past 20 years clinical trials have shown that lumpectomies and other forms of breast-conservation therapy result in overall survival durations comparable to those achieved by radical mastectomy in early-stage patients. Coupled with quality-of-life factors, this has established conservation therapy as a mainstream treatment for early-stage breast cancer.
Hologic and Faxitron both supported the rise in popularity of breast-conservation therapy. Hologic contributed to the shift in treatment practices by developing devices that enable targeted radiation therapy. This form of therapy kills cancer cells left behind following lumpectomy, decreasing the risk of the disease recurring.
In parallel, Faxitron developed devices to support the lumpectomy procedure itself. In the early days of breast-conservation therapy, hospitals relied on departmental X-ray equipment to confirm removal of the target lesion. Faxitron’s contribution to the field is an X-ray device that enables the immediate, in-theater assessment of tumor margins and confirmation of lesion removal. Some surgeons have speculated that in-theater assessments will reduce rates of re-operation.
Hologic will now sell these devices alongside its existing interventional breast products, giving it a broader portfolio of technologies to pitch to breast surgeons and pathologists. Management hopes the combination of breast products will drive growth at Hologic in the years to come.
“This is a great tuck-in acquisition that leverages our existing strength in the breast health channel, while providing attractive growth and return on invested capital,” Hologic CEO Steve MacMillan said in a statement.
Sales at Faxitron totaled $27 million in the last fiscal year. Hologic expects the deal to have no major effect on its earnings per share up to the end of the 2019 financial year, and have a positive effect thereafter.