BETHESDA, Md., April 29 - HUPO announced on Monday that Amersham Biosciences has agreed to be the proteome organization's first corporate sponsor, to the tune of about $500,000, Amersham confirmed. The money will go towards the cost of hosting HUPO's first independently organized meeting this November in Versailles, France, providing a lecture series featuring HUPO-associated scientists, and other activities, HUPO president Sam Hanash said at a meeting of the organization today at the National Institutes of Health.
Although Amersham and HUPO have not completed their negotiations regarding the exact amount of funding Amersham will provide, G nter Theßeling, Amersham's marketing director for proteomics, said the $500,000 could be seen as the company's first step in a potentially larger collaboration with the year-old proteomics organization. "It's worth investing in this initiative, because proteomics is a very important market," said Theßeling. "We're watering a nicely growing plant."
Hanash stressed that the partnership with Amersham is non-exclusive, adding that HUPO is in negotiations with several large pharmaceutical companies for additional funding. Chris Spivey, a former conference organizer for Cambridge Healthtech Institute now working with HUPO, said that the big pharmas had expressed interest in making donations of about $250,000 each. In return, Spivey said the pharma companies expected to have input into the direction of HUPO's planned activities.
At the NIH meeting, Hanash and other HUPO leaders detailed their plans for coordinating a project to identify the proteins present in human plasma and serum taken from normal males and females, and discussed a plan to create a repository of antibodies to human proteins, among other projects.