XYRCOS Provides Advanced Research Capabilities in a Sleek New Design with Improved Fluorescence, Optics and RED-i ® Target Locator Built Directly Inside Microscope Objective

BEVERLY, MA and TORONTO, Ontario – March 20, 2012  Hamilton Thorne Ltd. (TSX-V: HTL), a leading provider of precision laser devices and advanced imaging systems for the fertility, stem cell and developmental biology research markets, today announced the launch of its leading-edge XYRCOS™  laser system for advanced research applications. The XYRCOS™ laser offers a significant advance in integrated laser optics, providing additional functionality, increased resolution and compatibility with all major microscope models.

 The elegant and sleek new design of the XYRCOS™ is engineered to have the laser and RED-i ® target locator built directly inside the objective, providing unparalleled precision while saving researchers from tedious alignment procedures. The improved working distance of the XYRCOS™ laser objective provides researchers with more compatibility and flexibility to integrate with existing laboratory equipment.  The laser also features enhanced UV transmission/fluorescence, which is compatible with many fluorescing stains used in advanced research applications. The XYRCOS™ offers additional benefits for cutting-edge embryo micromanipulation applications such as the creation of transgenic animals, gene targeting, and stem cell research including blastocyst injection, 8-cell injection, and laser-assisted animal model IVF.

 “Built on the same hardware platform as our popular turret-mounted lasers, the new XYRCOS™ offers researchers an elegant laser design that enables intricate and delicate cell micromanipulation capabilities.  Already installed at some of our industry-leading beta site customers, the XYRCOS™ laser has been used in some of today’s most advanced and celebrated scientific research,” said David Wolf President, Chief Executive Officer of Hamilton Thorne Ltd. “The improved image quality, better working distance and enhanced fluorescence provides researchers with significant advantages in working with advanced  applications such as stem cell research and developmental biology, and has already proven effective in important research studies such as reprogramming cells.”

 “With its compact design, long working distance and excellent optics, the new XYRCOS™ laser provides a flexible research tool that can be used with any lab microscope and fits easily into the current daily workflow,” said Diarmaid Douglas-Hamilton, Chief Technology Officer, Senior Vice President of Research & Development and Co-founder of Hamilton Thorne. “The improved fluorescence has been especially useful in the lab since the XYRCOS™ installs directly onto the turret, leaving both the fluorescence and filter cube ports free for normal use, providing significant advantages in how cells can be viewed and analyzed.”

 The XYRCOS™ laser system will be available in both 40X and 20X objectives, and will also have the popular Staccato™ multi-pulse laser activation software as an additional feature option. Due to its smaller footprint, the XYRCOS™ allows full use of the turret and fits into all major microscopes, including newer and upright microscopes. The XYRCOS™ is available for non-clinical research use only.

About Hamilton Thorne Ltd. (www.hamiltonthorne.com)

Hamilton Thorne designs, manufactures and distributes precision laser devices and advanced imaging systems for the fertility, stem cell and development biology research markets.  It provides novel solutions for Life Science that reduce cost, increase productivity, improve results and enable research breakthroughs in regenerative medicine, stem cell research and fertility markets. Hamilton Thorne's laser products attach to standard inverted microscopes and operate as robotic micro-surgeons, enabling a wide array of scientific applications and IVF procedures.  Its imaging systems improve outcomes in human IVF clinics and animal breeding facilities and provide high-end toxicology analyses. 

Hamilton Thorne’s growing customer base includes pharmaceutical companies, biotechnology companies, fertility clinics, university research centers, and other commercial and academic research establishments worldwide. Current customers include world-leading research labs such as Harvard, MIT, Yale, McGill, DuPont, Monsanto, Charles River Labs, Jackson Labs, Merck, Novartis, Pfizer, and Oxford and Cambridge.

Neither the Toronto Venture Exchange, nor its regulation services provider (as that term is defined in the policies of the exchange), accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release.

Certain information in this press release may contain forward-looking statements. This information is based on current expectations that are subject to significant risks and uncertainties that are difficult to predict. Actual results might differ materially from results suggested in any forward-looking statements. The Company assumes no obligation to update the forward-looking statements, or to update the reasons why actual results could differ from those reflected in the forward-looking statements unless and until required by securities laws applicable to the Company. Additional information identifying risks and uncertainties is contained in filings by the Company with the Canadian securities regulators, which filings are available at www.sedar.com.

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