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Fingerprints/Short Reads: Nov 1, 2003

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Paul Allen will donate $100 million in seed funding to establish the Allen Institute for Brain Science in Seattle. Early research will include the Allen Brain Atlas, using genomics and neuroscience to create a cellular map of the brain. Mark Boguski, whose career has included time at NCBI and Rosetta Inpharmatics, will direct the institute.

 

Gualberto Ruaño, last seen as CEO of Genaissance Pharmaceuticals, has a new venture in the works: Genomas will use genomics as a foundation to disease prevention. Ruano says his company relies on “physiogenomics,” or analysis of all the factors affecting health and their interactions with each other.

 

ZymoGenetics announces the arrival of Frederik Henell, its new senior vice president for business development. Henell was previously at Pharmacia, where he worked on business development as well as M&A activity.

 

Hans Johansson, former president of Personal Chemistry, becomes president of Pyrosequencing after that company acquired his firm. Pyrosequencing also cuts its roster by some 30 people, leaving the staff of the merged companies at about 150.

 

David Kulp heads to the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, to start a bioinformatics research program. Prior to this, Kulp was bioinformatics VP at Affymetrix.

Two heads are better: EraGen hires two new VPs for sales and marketing. Mary Holland, who was last at Nanogen, will focus her efforts on EraGen’s synthetic DNA technology. Mark Meyers, previously at Scimagix, will take on the proteomics business.

 

Andrea Califano, best known for co-founding First Genetic Trust in 2000, began a new appointment and lab at Columbia University earlier this year. As director of Columbia’s bioinformatics core, Califano’s work targets computational and systems biology. He remains an advisor to FGT.

 

Previously in biotech development at Lilly Research Labs, Richard DiMarchi takes on the role as CEO of Ambrx — he also continues as a professor at Indiana University and an Inproteo member. Meantime, Thomas Daniel joins as CSO of Ambrx after stints at Vanderbilt University and Immunex.

 

Simon Bennett becomes director of business development at sequencing firm Solexa. Bennett previously held the same position at Oxagen, where he led collaborations to develop disease-focused genetic programs.

 

Incyte names David Hastings to the CFO post. Hastings, who comes from Arqule, replaces John Vuko, who is expected to remain with the company in an advisory capacity for a time.

 

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.