Orchid Cellmark Inc. Comments on U.K. Decision to Close Its Government Forensics Agency

PRINCETON, N.J., Dec. 20, 2010 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Orchid Cellmark Inc. (Nasdaq:ORCH), a leading international provider of identity DNA testing services, said today the decision by the United Kingdom government to wind-down operations at the Forensic Science Service (FSS) could contribute to Orchid Cellmark's ongoing growth.

The FSS, formerly part of the U.K. Home Office and once the sole provider of services to U.K. Police forces, became a GovCo in 2005, a non-public company solely owned by the government. The FSS currently holds the largest share of the U.K. forensic testing market. However, despite its quality work and its development of the U.K. National DNA Database, according to a ministerial statement to parliament, losses of £2 million per month and loss of market share to commercial rivals, including Orchid Cellmark, are key reasons for the government's decision to have "no continuing state interest in a forensics provider" by March 2012.

"We believe this development could have a significant impact on our U.K. forensics business," said Thomas A. Bologna, president and chief executive officer of Orchid Cellmark. "The operational and staffing decisions we have been making in the U.K. have delivered increased capacity for the provision of high quality forensic services to meet the changing requirements of U.K. police forces."

In making the announcement, the U.K. government also stated its desire that the U.K. forensic science industry operate as a genuine market, with the expectation that police will deal with serious crimes quicker and more efficiently by using services from a more competitive private sector market.

About Orchid Cellmark

Orchid Cellmark (Nasdaq:ORCH) is a leading international provider of DNA testing services primarily for forensic and family relationship applications. Orchid Cellmark is one of the largest providers of forensic DNA testing services and its DNA results are used by the criminal justice system to assist with the identification of perpetrators, the exclusion of suspects and the exoneration of wrongfully convicted individuals. The company provides DNA family relationship testing to numerous child services organizations and individuals seeking to verify parentage. Orchid Cellmark also serves immigration and security authorities for DNA testing of individuals. In the agriculture field, the company provides DNA testing services for selective trait breeding. Orchid Cellmark's strong market positions in these areas reflect the company's accredited laboratories in the U.S. and U.K., its innovative genetic analysis technologies and expertise, and the company's reputation for exceptional quality, reliability and customer service for nearly two decades. More information on Orchid Cellmark can be found at www.orchidcellmark.com.

All statements in this press release that are not historical are forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, including, but not limited to, statements regarding: expectations regarding Orchid Cellmark's business operations and outlook and; Orchid Cellmark's belief that the decision by the United Kingdom's Government to wind-down the Forensic Science Service could have a significant impact on Orchid Cellmark's forensics business in the U.K. Such statements are subject to the risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those projected, including, but not limited to the risk that the amount of business gained by Orchid Cellmark as a result of the wind down of Forensic Science Service may not be significant, uncertainties relating to trends in government spending, outsourcing trends, technologies, product development, manufacturing, market acceptance, cost and pricing of Orchid Cellmark's products and services, dependence on government funding and collaborations, regulatory approvals, competition, intellectual property of others, patent protection, litigation, the timing of release of federal and state funds, the timing and amount of contracts put up for bid, and Orchid Cellmark's ability to successfully offer its services directly to U.K. police forces. These risks and other additional factors affecting these forward-looking statements and Orchid Cellmark's business are discussed under the headings "Risks Related to Our Business" and "Risks Associated with Our Common Stock" in Orchid Cellmark's Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2009, as amended, as filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, and in other filings made by Orchid Cellmark with the Securities and Exchange Commission from time to time. Orchid Cellmark expressly disclaims any obligation or undertaking to release publicly any updates or revisions to any forward-looking statements contained herein to reflect any change in Orchid Cellmark's expectations with regard thereto or any change in events, conditions, or circumstances on which any such statements are based, except as may be required by law.

Information contained in our press releases should be considered accurate only as of the date of the release. Information in any press release may be superseded by more recent information we have disclosed in later press releases, filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission or otherwise. Press releases may contain forward-looking statements based on the expectations of our management as of the date of the release. Actual results may materially differ based on several factors, including those described in the press release.

CONTACT:  Orchid Cellmark Inc.
          Thomas Bologna
          (609) 750-2324

          The Torrenzano Group
          Ed Orgon
          (212) 681-1700
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