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In 1952, David and Alice Schwartz begin Bio-Rad in a 1,600-square-foot Quonset hut in Berkeley, California, offering life science products and services to identify, separate, purify, and analyze chemical and biological materials. Products introduced during this time include tobacco mosaic virus and analytical-grade ion exchange resins.
Bio-Rad is incorporated.
Bio-Rad moves its operation to Richmond, California.
Bio-Gel® P gel chromatography media are introduced for separating proteins by molecular weight.
Bio-Rad holds its Initial Public Offering and sells 40,000 shares at $3.50 a share. The company opens its first international office in Munich.
Bio-Rad enters the clinical diagnostics market with the introduction of the T4 (thyroxine) thyroid function test, the first commercially available test to accurately measure the thyroid hormone T4. By the early 1970s, tests are developed for a variety of other diseases including cardiovascular disease, lead poisoning, and anemia, and the company's Clinical Diagnostics Group is formed.
Electrophoresis grade chemicals are introduced to support reproducible protein separation and analysis.
Bio-Rad introduces Aminex® HPX-87C high-pressure liquid chromatography columns.
Bio-Rad acquires Environmental Chemical Specialties, adding quality controls to its product portfolio.
Bio-Rad is listed on the American Stock Exchange.
Bio-Rad introduces Macro-Prep® ion exchange resin for large-scale protein purification and also debuts a new logo, the same one that is used today.
Bio-Rad introduces a hemoglobin A1c test for diabetes monitoring. Also in 1982, the company acquires Elfiplast, an Italian manufacturer of plastic products.
The DIAMAT™ analyzer system is introduced to automate HbA1c determinations.
Bio-Rad opens its first offices in Hercules, California.
The Gene Pulser® system becomes the first commercially available apparatus used for transferring genes into cells. The Gene Pulser MXcell™ electroporation system (pictured) is today's successor to the early Gene Pulser instrument.
Bio-Rad introduces the CHEF-DR® II pulsed field electrophoresis system, used to separate large fragments of DNA into clear patterns for analysis.
Bio-Rad acquires Belgium-based Research Separations Laboratories, manufacturers of chromatographic materials.
Bio-Rad introduces the REMEDi™ rapid emergency diagnostic system, an automated system used in drug profiling. Also in 1990, the Immunoblot HIV test, the first western blot confirmatory test for the AIDS antibody, is introduced.
Bio-Rad introduces precast gels, reducing the bench time and labor required to perform routine protein and nucleic acid electrophoresis.
The VARIANT™ hemoglobin testing system, used to screen for common hemoglobin disorders such as β-thalassemia and sickle cell anemia, is introduced.
Bio-Rad introduces CHT™ ceramic hydroxyapatite media, used to purify biopharmaceuticals to create therapies and vaccines for a variety of diseases.
The Biotechnology Explorer™ program is launched to offer science education programs for high school and college students. Bio-Rad unveils its website in the same year.
Bio-Rad introduces the UNITY™ Quality Control data management software for clinical laboratories; the software allows multiple users to store, access, and share quality control data and documents within and between laboratory locations.
Bio-Rad acquires Pasteur Sanofi Diagnostics, based in Marnes-la-Coquette, France. The acquisition broadens Bio-Rad's offerings with products for blood virus (HIV and hepatitis) testing and for microbiology and autoimmunity testing. Also in 1999, Bio-Rad enters the polymerase chain reaction (PCR) market with the iCycler® thermal cycler.
Bio-Rad introduces a test for bovine spongiform encephalopathy (mad cow disease).
Norman Schwartz becomes president and CEO as David Schwartz steps down form these roles, though he remains as Chairman of the Board. In 2003, Bio-Rad also launches the D-10™ hemoglobin testing system.
In 2004, Bio-Rad acquires MJ Research, a company well known for its innovative thermal cycling products. Bio-Rad also adds the Hematronix line of quality control products to its portfolio. Also in 2004, Bio-Rad launches the Experion™ automated electrophoresis system.
Bio-Rad launches the BioPlex® 2200 system, the first fully automated random access multiplex testing system to generate multiple results from a single patient sample.
Bio-Rad launches the ProteOn™ XPR36 protein interaction array system, which detects and quantifies up to 36 simultaneous molecular interactions.
Bio-Rad acquires DiaMed, a manufacturer of blood typing and screening reagents and instruments, introduces siLentMer™ targeted gene silencing technology, and launches the point-of-care in2it™ A1c analyzer, which delivers A1c results in minutes in a physician's office. David Schwartz receives the Pittcon Heritage Award.
Bio-Rad launches next-generation PCR instruments including 1000-series thermal cyclers and CFX real-time PCR detection systems as well as the Criterion Stain-Free™ gel imaging system, which eliminates staining and destaining steps and enables researchers to visualize protein samples in as few as 2½ minutes after electrophoresis. Bio-Rad stock is first traded on the New York Stock Exchange.
Bio-Rad receives U.S. FDA clearance for ToRC IgG and HSV-1 and HSV-2 IgG kits on the BioPlex® 2200 Multiplex System.
Bio-Rad introduces its IH-1000, an automated blood screening system, to markets outside the U.S. Also that year, the company launches its TGX™ precast gels as well as the TC10™ automated cell counter.
Bio-Rad launches antiphospholipid syndrome IgG, IgM, and IgA kits for its BioPlex® 2200 system and also acquires QuantaLife and Droplet Digital™ PCR technology, subsequently introducing the QX100™ Droplet Digital PCR system.
Bio-Rad co-founder, David Schwartz, 88, passes away in April.
In August, Bio-Rad launches its Digital Biology Center to develop products for the research and diagnostics markets based on the company's Droplet Digital™ PCR technology.
In January, Bio-Rad acquires AbD Serotec, a leading antibody manufacturer.
In June, Bio-Rad introduces the S3™ cell sorter, an automated benchtop cell sorter.
In April, Bio-Rad Acquires GnuBIO, developer of droplet-based DNA sequencing technology.
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Tina CucciaCorporate Communications Manager
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