Takara Bio has over 90 years of experience in pursuing excellence in biochemistry tools. We started in 1925 by improving fermentation techniques for cultivating microbes, and in 1950 we launched a biotech R&D center that yielded cutting-edge advances. Today our extensive portfolio of reagents and instrumentation supports a wide variety of applications, from basic research to routine laboratory testing, for laboratories around the world.
1967: Takara Bio Inc.
Takara Bio Inc. was established as an offshoot of the Takara Shuzo beverage company in 1967. For over 50 years, Takara Bio Inc. has provided a diverse array of biotechnology products and services, including enzymes and reagents, contracted research and production capabilities, nutraceuticals, and gene-based therapies currently under clinical development.
For much of its history and up to the present day, Takara Bio Inc. has been associated with industry-leading restriction enzymes and PCR polymerases, including current offerings such as Takara Ex Taq, Takara LA Taq, and PrimeSTAR GXL polymerases. The variety of available Takara-brand enzymes provides researchers with tremendous flexibility in selecting the best one for a given application, including those that involve the analysis of technically challenging samples. Takara Bio is also widely recognized for its RetroNectin transduction reagent, which has been used in countless clinical trials and is a worldwide standard for gene therapy protocols. Included among Takara-brand nutraceutical products are plant-derived dietary supplements and several value-added mushroom cultivars.
In addition to products, a variety of services are offered by Takara Bio Inc., including genome sequencing, expression profiling, data mining, technical support for immunotherapy research, and the production of custom reagents for gene therapy. Takara Bio Inc. is currently conducting clinical trials aimed at developing gene-based therapies for diseases such as cancer and AIDS, and the recent construction of a GMP-compliant facility in Kusatsu City, Japan, has enabled Takara Bio Inc. to offer clinical-grade production capabilities.
2005: Acquisition of Clontech Laboratories, Inc.
For over 30 years, Clontech Laboratories, Inc. (now Takara Bio USA, Inc.), has supported the life sciences research community through the development and commercialization of kits and reagents for diverse experimental applications, with emphases in cell and molecular biology. The company was founded in Silicon Valley in 1984 at the height of the molecular biology revolution. Following acquisition by Becton Dickinson (BD) in 1999, Clontech was acquired by Takara Bio in 2005.
Noteworthy product offerings in Clontech's history include reagents and expression systems for analyses of gene function and protein-protein interactions, kits for cDNA synthesis and library construction, cDNA arrays for differential gene expression analysis, and a diverse assortment of widely used fluorescent protein vectors for studies of gene expression and protein localization. More recently, Clontech has been associated with best-in-class tools for next-generation sequencing (SMART, SMARTer, and SMART-Seq kits) and PCR (Titanium Taq and Advantage 2 polymerases), as well as innovative solutions for cloning and mutagenesis (In-Fusion Cloning systems), protein purification (Capturem technology), and genome editing (Guide-it kits).
2014: Acquisition of Cellartis
Cellartis (now Takara Bio Europe AB) was founded by researchers from the University of Gothenburg in 2001 with the objective of providing cutting-edge products and services for research applications involving stem cells. Following the purchase of Cellartis by Cellectis SA in 2011, Cellartis was acquired by Takara Bio in 2014.
Historically, a primary focus of Cellartis involved developing and distributing stem cell lines—including both human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) and human induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSCs)—for general or custom applications. More recently, the scope of offerings expanded to include products such as culture systems, media, and reagents which made Cellartis' expertise and innovative technologies more readily accessible to researchers. An important milestone involved the development and commercialization of the Cellartis DEF-CS Culture System, a revolutionary approach to culturing stem cells that offers significant advantages relative to other methods.
Most recently, we have launched a variety of Cellartis stem cell services that leverage over 15 years' experience with human pluripotent stem cell culture and differentiation.
2017: Acquisition of Rubicon Genomics, Inc.
Rubicon Genomics, Inc. was founded in 2000 in Ann Arbor, Michigan by two University of Michigan faculty members, Dr. John Langmore and Dr. Vladimir Makarov, with the aim of developing and commercializing nucleic acid library preparation kits that simplify sample processing workflows while providing high sensitivity and reproducibility. The company was acquired by Takara Bio in 2017.
Drawing upon exceptional knowledge of nucleic acid chemistry, enzymology, and sample processing, Rubicon focused on developing kits to enable researchers to examine a variety of challenging samples—FFPE tissue, plasma, and single cells—even when using degraded or small amounts of starting material. Notably, Rubicon developed ThruPLEX, PicoPLEX, and TransPLEX technologies for library preparation from low inputs of fragmented DNA, single cells, and FFPE-derived RNA, respectively.
Moving forward, Takara Bio's SMARTer NGS portfolio will combine the power of SMART cDNA synthesis technology for RNA-seq applications with Rubicon's ThruPLEX and PicoPLEX technologies for DNA-seq to provide unmatched sensitivity for demanding sequencing applications—regardless of sample or input type.
2017: Acquisition of WaferGen Bio-systems, Inc.
WaferGen Bio-systems, Inc. leveraged expertise in engineering and microfluidics to develop and commercialize automation platforms for high-throughput sample prep and single-cell analysis. The company was founded in 2002 and acquired by Takara Bio in 2017.
WaferGen's flagship ICELL8 technology (now incorporated in Takara Bio's SMARTer ICELL8 Single-Cell System), provides a novel combination of cell isolation, cell selection, and throughput capabilities that enable researchers to perform single-cell analysis with unparalleled control and reproducibility. The SmartChip qPCR platform can be used for profiling and validating molecular biomarkers and enables massively parallel singleplex PCR for one-step target enrichment and library preparation. Another noteworthy WaferGen product, the Apollo 324 Next Generation Sample Preparation System (now referred to as the "SMARTer Apollo system") provides convenience, flexibility, and reliability for a wide array of sample preparation applications.
With the integration of WaferGen's products and technologies, Takara Bio can now offer complete workflows for automated sample processing and analysis that deliver unmatched ease-of-use and reliability for both basic and clinical research applications.
Mountain View, CA—January 18, 2017—Takara Bio USA Holdings, Inc. ("TBUSH") announced that it has completed the acquisition of Rubicon Genomics, Inc. ("Rubicon"). Rubicon has become a wholly-owned subsidiary of TBUSH as of January 17, 2017 (US local time). The Takara Bio Group provides a wide range of life science products and services under the Takara, Clontech, and Cellartis brands that assist discovery, translational and clinical scientists in the advancement of their work. The Rubicon acquisition will allow the Takara Bio Group to augment and expand its worldwide commercial offerings in next generation sequencing (NGS) sample preparation and expand into new markets.
Mountain View, CA—March 1, 2017—Takara Bio USA Holdings, Inc. ("TBUSH") announced that it has completed the acquisition of WaferGen Bio-systems, Inc. ("WaferGen"), WaferGen has become a wholly owned subsidiary of TBUSH as of February 28, 2017 (US local time).
Takara Bio USA, Inc.
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