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Med tech's hottest takeover targets for the rest of 2013

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While med tech M&A didn't exactly shoot for the moon in the first half of the year, the industry's dealmakers have been far more feverish ever since, inking billion-dollar buyouts and slamming shut months of speculation. Now, as the New Year approaches, some of the field's most sought-after companies are still up for grabs.

This year, a staid H1 led to a booming third quarter, with long-simmering deals like KKR's $1.7 billion buy of an 80% stake in Panasonic Healthcare finally coming to terms, and out-of-the-blue blockbusters like Stryker's ($SYK) $1.7 billion agreement to pick up Mako Surgical ($MAKO) catching analysts by surprise. Baxter ($BAX) finally got around to closing its roughly $4 billion acquisition of dialysis competitor Gambro, and Abbott Laboratories ($ABT), grappling with life after pharma, spent a combined $560 million to up its stake in eye surgery and vascular devices.

That gush of deals meant new homes for a bevy of rumored acquirees, but, heading into the fourth quarter, a few of the year's most talked-about targets remain on the table. Join us for a look at the outfits most likely to change hands by year's end.

-- Damian Garde (email | Twitter)