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Fingerprints/Short Reads: Sep 1, 2004


Francis Crick, who as co-discoverer of the structure of DNA needed no introduction, suffered from colon cancer and died in July at age 88. After his famous find at the Cavendish Laboratory of Cambridge University, for which he shared the Nobel Prize in 1962, Crick’s research path encompassed embryology, DNA function, and protein synthesis.


Gene Network Sciences named James H. Watson (no, not that one) COO and CFO. Watson was previously president and COO of startup Pathlight Technology.


Anthony Wynshaw-Boris is the director for the new Center for Human Genetics/Genomics at the University of California, San Diego. The center, part of the school’s health sciences division, is expected to open in 2006, says Wynshaw-Boris, who is a professor of pediatrics and medicine at the school.


Bill Spencer, most recently director of business development at OpGen in Madison, Wis., left to become strategic marketing manager at 454 Life Sciences in Branford, Conn.


Eric Fung climbs the ranks at Ciphergen to his new post as VP of clinical and medical affairs in the company’s new diagnostics unit. Fung headed to Ciphergen in 2000 after working as a Howard Hughes investigator at Stanford University.

Wenpei Su is the first director of genomics applications at gene regulation company CeMines. Su comes from Dow Chemical, where he studied therapeutic proteins, and before that, he was a project leader at Torrey Mesa Research Institute working with gene-profiling and proteomic technologies.


A couple of departures from Sequenom: Jay Lichter, executive vice president of business development, and Pete De Spain, manager of corporate communications, left the company. De Spain is now at Anadys Pharmaceuticals.


Computational modeling firm Entelos appointed Charles Sholtz to be VP of legal affairs and intellectual property.


CytRx hired Matthew Natalizio as CFO, replacing Kirk Peacock, and Jack Barber as senior VP of drug development. Barber previously worked at Immusol and Viagene. Meantime, Benjamin Levin is the company’s new general counsel and vice president of legal affairs.


Leslie Brown, previously chief operating officer at Iconix Pharma-ceuticals, joins Pharmacopeia Drug Discovery as president and CEO. Prior to Iconix, Brown served as COO at GeneTrace, a functional genomics firm.


Serologicals chose Robert Brown, formerly of Andrx and Bristol-Myers Squibb, to be its VP for corporate development.

The Scan

Study Finds Sorghum Genetic Loci Influencing Composition, Function of Human Gut Microbes

Focusing on microbes found in the human gut microbiome, researchers in Nature Communications identified 10 sorghum loci that appear to influence the microbial taxa or microbial metabolite features.

Treatment Costs May Not Coincide With R&D Investment, Study Suggests

Researchers in JAMA Network Open did not find an association between ultimate treatment costs and investments in a drug when they analyzed available data on 60 approved drugs.

Sleep-Related Variants Show Low Penetrance in Large Population Analysis

A limited number of variants had documented sleep effects in an investigation in PLOS Genetics of 10 genes with reported sleep ties in nearly 192,000 participants in four population studies.

Researchers Develop Polygenic Risk Scores for Dozens of Disease-Related Exposures

With genetic data from two large population cohorts and summary statistics from prior genome-wide association studies, researchers came up with 27 exposure polygenic risk scores in the American Journal of Human Genetics.