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Blue Heron Wins Phase I SBIR Grant to Develop Tools for Cloning Difficult Genes

NEW YORK, Sept. 9 (GenomeWeb News) - Blue Heron Biotechnology has won a Phase I SBIR grant from the National Institute of General Medical Science and the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease to develop new tools for cloning genes that are "difficult" to grow in bacteria, the Bothell, Wash.-based company said yesterday.

 

The amount of the grant was not immediately available from the company, but NIH databases list a one-year grant entitled "High-Copy Number Cloning Of Toxic Genes" that started Aug.1 with $118,223 for fiscal year 2005.

 

The tools under development will block functional protein expression, thus allowing recombinant plasmids with toxic genes to be propagated in bacteria. Blue Heron plans to use the technologies to improve its GeneMaker gene synthesis service and may make it available as kits to modulate protein expression levels in E. coli.

The Scan

Tens of Millions Saved

The Associated Press writes that vaccines against COVID-19 saved an estimated 20 million lives in their first year.

Supersized Bacterium

NPR reports that researchers have found and characterized a bacterium that is visible to the naked eye.

Also Subvariants

Moderna says its bivalent SARS-CoV-2 vaccine leads to a strong immune response against Omicron subvariants, the Wall Street Journal reports.

Science Papers Present Gene-Edited Mouse Models of Liver Cancer, Hürthle Cell Carcinoma Analysis

In Science this week: a collection of mouse models of primary liver cancer, and more.