“The approval moves us another important step closer to officially becoming part of Merck KGaA,” said Martin Madaus, chairman, president and CEO of Millipore.

“The proposed combination will position Millipore well for continued growth, offering greater global capabilities in R&D, manufacturing and customer service, while allowing us to maintain our headquarters in Billerica, Massachusetts,” added Madaus.

Merck is expected to close the Millipore acquisition early in the third quarter of 2010.