In the end, however, Peterson predicted that the regulatory hurdles will not stop the deal.

The primary aim of the acquisition is to make Waltham, Mass.-based Thermo, the world's largest maker of scientific and laboratory equipment, a leader in genetic sequencing and other aspects of personalized medicine that can tailor treatments to patients. Life Technologies, with headquarters in Carlsbad, Calif., is considered second behind Illumina Inc. in the race to produce faster and less expensive gene sequencing technology.

San Diego-based Illumina last year rejected a $6.8 billion hostile takeover bid by Swiss drugmaker Roche Holding AG, but the company could find itself courted by suitors again now that its rival is being scooped up by a larger company.

Written by William McConnell in New York

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