Spotlight on Mary-Jane O’Sullivan, General Manager - Specialty Diagnostics

Mary-Jane O’Sullivan is the General Manager of the Diagnostics pillar within Paragon Care. Mary-Jane joined Paragon in April 2018 when Immulab (previously a business unit of CSL) was acquired by Paragon Care.


Q:  What trends are you seeing in the broader Diagnostics industry?

A:  Diagnostics is clearly a growth industry, with innovation and increased regulation driving demand for in vitro diagnostics (IVDs) and associated equipment in both the clinical and R&D markets.

Rather than simply being a way to identify which patients have a specific disease, diagnostics are now used to support the clinical development of drugs, predict disease before symptoms begin, forecast the progress of a disorder, and identify patients who are most likely to respond (or not respond) to specific treatments.

Over the past year, there has been a focus on increasing Australia’s ‘Sovereign Manufacture’ capabilities to reduce reliance on overseas supply chains for essential products.

Immulab is a local manufacturer of Class III and Class IV IVDs used in blood banks. In addition, Immulab has the capability to manufacture other diagnostics products and has recently increased manufacturing of Viral Transport Media, which is used in COVID testing.


Q:  What do you see as the major growth opportunities in the Diagnostics pillar over the next year?

A:   The Diagnostics pillar is well positioned for growth over the next year through both the addition of new agencies and underlying organic growth through operating efficiencies and cross-selling. We have a diverse and innovative product portfolio designed to meet the growing demand.

A new agency, Immucor Transplant, was onboarded from 1st March (see above article) and we have had ongoing success in recent tenders.

We are also focused on the growth and expansion of existing agencies. The Diagnostics pillar is comprised of Immulab, Immuno and LabGear and these individual businesses have now been successfully consolidated, which has delivered operational synergies and efficiencies. This consolidation now provides a solid platform to cross sell the complementary Diagnostic product range across pathology, R&D and tertiary sectors by leveraging existing relationships and maximising coverage.

Customers are responding very positively to this strategy and the next step will be to look for cross-selling opportunities with other pillars within Paragon Care.


Q:  What are the opportunities for expansion in China over the next few years?

A:   We view China as an exciting growth opportunity for the Diagnostics pillar and Immulab currently sells a range of contract manufactured and raw materials into China. The market demand in China is huge, with ongoing growth driven by innovation and regulation.

The longer-term growth strategy is to establish some strategic partnerships to expand sales into China. Immulab has appointed the first distribution partner in China and is now working towards the registration of key products.

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