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Fisher s Jellinek Dies in Plane Crash; Cepheid s Winn-Deen Wins AACC Award; Exagen Names Mignatti President; Agilent, PerkinElmer, and 454 Appoint New VPs; and Others

Frank Jellinek Jr., chairman emeritus of Fisher Scientific International, died Tuesday morning in a plane crash at the McClellan-Palomar Airport in Carlsbad, California.


Jellinek was 60 years old. He is survived by his wife, two children and two grandchildren.


Jellinek was a veteran in the scientific-research industry with more than 40 years of experience. He was appointed chairman emeritus following the 2004 merger of Apogent Technologies and Fisher Scientific International.

Emily Winn-Deen, a vice president of Cepheid, received the 2006 award for outstanding contributions to clinical chemistry through science and technology by the Northern California section of the American Association for Clinical Chemistry, Cepheid announced today.


Winn-Deen was selected for her contributions to advancing molecular diagnostics, the company said.

Agilent Technologies has named Helen Stimson vice president and general manager of global consumables for the company's life sciences and chemical analysis business, Agilent said today.


Stimson is a 24-year veteran of Agilent and Hewlett-Packard. She was previously global consumables business program manager.

Exagen Diagnostics has named Robert Mignatti president and chief operating officer to oversee day-today operations as ell as company alliances, Exagen said yesterday.


Mignatti joins Exagen from Esoterix, where he served as executive vice president and chief operating officer and worked directly with Jim McClintic, who became Exagen's CEO in October.

Katherine Webster has joined 454 Life Sciences as vice president for measurement services center sales, a newly created position, the company said yesterday.


Webster was most recently president of Biotage, Biosystems Division, where she oversaw the company's sales and marketing efforts into R&D. She has also held posiions at Applied Biosystems, Chemdex, Celera Genomics, AnVil Informatics and Molecular Staging.

PerkinElmer has appointed Aaron Geist vice president, business development, the company announced last week.


Geist was formerly director and senior research analyst at Robert W. Baird. He was chosen as a top analyst by both the Wall Street Journal and Forbes/StarMine in 2004. He has a PhD in microbiology and molecular virology from Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia and BS degrees in genetics and biology from the University of Western Ontario.

London-based Abingworth Management named Andy Sandham a venture partner on Monday.


Sandham was previously CEO of Ionix Pharmaceuticals and chief operating officer of Signature BioScience, Hexagen, and Cantrab Pharmaceuticals. He has also held positions at Amersham, Celltech, and Roche. He is currently non-executive chairman of NeurAxon and Novacta Biosystems.

CMEA Ventures announced on Monday that Andrea Tobias has been named partner.


Tobias was previously a venture partner and has been on CMEA's life sciences team since July 2001. Prior to CMEA, Tobias was assistant director in venture capital at Apax Partners & Cie Ventures in Paris and at Abingworth Management in London.

Athena Biotechnologies has appointed Robert Woods as president and CEO and named William Kirk to the board of directors, the company announced last week.


Woods succeeds founder Barry Marrs, who will assume the newly-created position of chief technology officer and also retain his position as chairman of the board of directors.


Woods is the former chairman of Syngenta. He joined Zeneca Ag Products/ICI Ag Products in 1990 as group president. He currently serves as a director of the Gowan Company, InsectiGen and Targeted Growth. He is also an advisor to Unifusion.


Kirk retired as senior vice president of DuPont in 2001 after 37 years of service. He is on the board of directors of Advanced BioNutrition and InsectiGen.

Thomas Strader has joined Global GeneTechs as CEO, the company said Monday.


Strader has held positions at LabOne, Gilson, and Promega. He has a MS in biotechnology from the University of Wisconsin, Madison and a BS in biology from the University of Missouri.

The Scan

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A gene drive approach could be used to render mosquitos unable to spread malaria, researchers report in Science Advances.

Gut Microbiomes Allow Bears to Grow to Similar Sizes Despite Differing Diets

Researchers in Scientific Reports find that the makeup of brown bears' gut microbiomes allows them to reach similar sizes even when feasting on different foods.

Finding Safe Harbor in the Human Genome

In Genome Biology, researchers present a new approach to identify genomic safe harbors where transgenes can be expressed without affecting host cell function.

New Data Point to Nuanced Relationship Between Major Depression, Bipolar Disorder

Lund University researchers in JAMA Psychiatry uncover overlapping genetic liabilities for major depression and bipolar disorder.