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Bruker BioSciences, Beckman Coulter, Thermo Fisher, Agilent Technologies, Sigma-Aldrich, Stratagene

Bruker to Sell 10.4M Shares of Stock
Mass spectrometry equipment maker Bruker BioSciences plans to offer for sale a total of 10.4 million shares of the company’s common stock.
The company last week filed an S-3 statement with the US Securities and Exchange Commission disclosing plans to offer up 2.2 million shares on its own.
Four other shareholders, all members of the Laukien family, will offer an aggregate of 8.2 million shares, Bruker added. The Laukiens currently hold roughly 65 percent of Bruker’s 102.2 million shares of outstanding common stock. Frank Laukien, chairman, president and CEO of Bruker, currently holds roughly 18.9 million shares and has not registered to sell any of his shares in connection with the offering.
Both the company and the shareholders have granted underwriters 30 days to purchase an aggregate of as much as 1.6 million shares for over-allotments.

Beckman Closes $600M Convertible Notes Offering
Beckman Coulter said it is closing its offering of $600 million in convertible senior notes that it announced last week.
The company said the closing satisfied one condition of the offer, which allowed for the sale of notes that pay 2.5 percent semiannually and occasionally at the beginning of a six-month period December 2012, and are due in 2036.
Beckman offered an initial $525 million and investors took a $75 million option, the company said.
The tender offering closed Tuesday, Dec. 19 at 5:00 EST.
Beckman said it will use the part of the cash to resolve outstanding debts and fund R&D efforts, including a molecular diagnostics project.  

Thermo Fisher Raises 2007 Revenue Guidance
Thermo Fisher Scientific last week raised its 2007 revenue guidance by around 2 percent.
Thermo said it expects 2007 revenue to be between $9.4 billion and $9.5 billion. Earlier this year CEO Marijn Dekkers predicted that receipts for the year would be between $9.2 billion to $9.3 billion.
The revised guidance marks an increase of between 7 percent and 8 percent over the $8.8 billion in revenue the company would have generated in 2006 had their merger occurred that year.   
In its statement last week, Thermo said most of the increased revenues will come from organic growth as opposed to acquisitions.

Agilent Signs Up New Microarray Service Providers
Agilent Technologies last week said it has signed on Empire Genomics and Welgene Biotech as new members of its Certified Microarray Service Providers program.
The program includes training and assessments with Agilent’s 60-mer oligo microarrays, the company said. The training systems for the Agilent platforms include quality control, sample preparation, hybridization, microarray analysis, and final data analysis.  
Empire Genomics is a personalized medicine company based in Buffalo, NY, and Welgene Biotech is a PCR and microarray-analysis company based in Taipei City, Taiwan.
Agilent also said it re-certified French RNA-splicing company ExonHit.

Sigma-Aldrich to Market Rubicon’s RNA-Amplification Product
Sigma-Aldrich will develop and market Rubicon Genomics’ RNA-amplification product, Sigma said last week.
Rubicon’s Transplex whole transcriptome-amplification tool works with RNA from plant, animal, and microorganisms and allows samples to be amplified from between 1,000 and 10,000 fold in a few hours.
Sigma said that under the agreement Rubicon will retain all rights to the Transplex for use in its molecular diagnostics ventures.

Stratagene Execs Sell Shares
Stratagene Chairman, President, and CEO Joseph Sorge has sold 88,000 shares of Stratagene stock at a price of $7.4491 per share, according to a US Securities and Exchange Commission filing.
The sale, which took place on Dec. 15, leaves Sorge with direct holdings of approximately 10.8 million shares. He also holds 2.3 million shares of Stratagene in a series of trusts.
John Pouk, Stratagene’s senior vice president of global sales and international operations, also sold 800 shares at a price of $7.23 per share on Dec. 15.
Stratagene’s shares closed Tuesday at $7.30.

The Scan

Study Tracks Off-Target Gene Edits Linked to Epigenetic Features

Using machine learning, researchers characterize in BMC Genomics the potential off-target effects of 19 computed or experimentally determined epigenetic features during CRISPR-Cas9 editing.

Coronary Artery Disease Risk Loci, Candidate Genes Identified in GWAS Meta-Analysis

A GWAS in Nature Genetics of nearly 1.4 million coronary artery disease cases and controls focused in on more than 200 candidate causal genes, including the cell motility-related myosin gene MYO9B.

Multiple Sclerosis Contributors Found in Proteome-Wide Association Study

With a combination of genome-wide association and brain proteome data, researchers in the Annals of Clinical and Translational Neurology tracked down dozens of potential multiple sclerosis risk proteins.

Quality Improvement Study Compares Molecular Tumor Boards, Central Consensus Recommendations

With 50 simulated cancer cases, researchers in JAMA Network Open compared molecular tumor board recommendations with central consensus plans at a dozen centers in Japan.