Gen-Probe Earnings Rise

Revenue jumps 28%.
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Diagnostic-test maker

Gen-Probe

(GPRO) - Get Report

said fourth-quarter earnings rose 40% from a year ago, boosted by a solid performance in its clinical diagnostics and screening businesses.

The company earned $16.7 million, or 32 cents a share, compared with $11.9 million, or 23 cents a share, a year ago. Analysts polled by Thomson First Call expected earnings of $15.6 million, or 30 cents a share, in the most recent quarter.

Fourth-quarter revenue rose 28.4% from the year ago to $87.9 million. Analysts were expecting revenue of $78 million in the fourth quarter.

For 2006, the company expects to earn 95 cents a share to $1.05 a share, on revenue of $325 million to $335 million.

Product sales, comprising clinical diagnostics and blood earnings, increased 33%. This rise was attributed to strong market share gains on both the company's semi-automated instrument platform, and on the high-throughput, fully automated TIGRIS system. While royalty and license revenue increased 59%, due to license revenue earned from bioMerieux, collaborative research revenue declined 18% to $6.5 million from a year ago, mainly from lower reimbursements from Chiron of blood screening development expenses.

On Thursday, Gen-Probe fell 19 cents to $46.71.

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