May 18, 2024
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UCSB spinout sold to medical supply giant


Sirigen, a UC Santa Barbara biomedical technology spinout, has been acquired by New Jersey-based Becton Dickinson and Co.

The company was founded in 2003 by two students and a professor to enter UCSB’s New Venture Competition. Sirigen won the competition in May 2003.

The company’s technology tapped recently discovered conductive polymers to improve what are known as fluorescent biomarkers. To detect substances such as DNA, scientists mark them with dye that lights up when hit with a certain frequency of light. Sirigen’s technology improved how much light the dyes could absorb and transmit back, making them more sensitive.

The company opened offices in Santa Barbara in 2005 before taking on several rounds of investment, some of which came from Santa Barbara-based fund Persistence Partners. The company eventually moved operations to San Diego in 2008 to be nearer biomedical talent centers, and it later moved its legal headquarters to the United Kingdom after a funding round by Seraphim Capital and Oxford Capital Partners.

Terms of the sale to Becton Dickinson, which goes by the market name BD, were not disclosed.

“This new technology is a natural complement to our instrument platforms and reagent portfolio,” Alberto Mas, president of BD Biosciences, said in a release. “We believe that the acquisition will enable us to develop a continuous cadence of novel, unique dyes and antibody specificity releases over the next two years, significantly expanding our life science research reagent portfolio with high-impact products.”