Skip to main content
Premium Trial:

Request an Annual Quote

Gene Expression: At EA, Affy Users Turn Expertise into Biz Plan

Premium

When Steve Casey decided to name his company Expression Analysis, he wasn’t looking for free advertising every time the phrase was mentioned. “It just came to my head that it would be a name that people would instantly recognize — there would be no confusion as to what the services were that we provided,” Casey says.

And he’s betting that those services will keep EA from getting lost in the shuffle. His company is one of the few US-based authorized service providers for Affymetrix. Also, by working with its clients on cRNA development, hybridization, and data analysis, EA looks to optimize results and minimize unwanted information.

“The others may have this over-the-wall mentality where you toss your RNA over the wall and they toss a CD-ROM with your resulting data back,” Casey says.

Part of EA’s advantage comes from its experience. Although the company is only six months old, it has its roots in three years of Duke University research using Affymetrix microarrays. Casey, a former Howard Hughes Medical Institute administrator, originally had the idea to privatize Duke’s expression analysis facility.

“[Duke] saw this as a way to reduce its overhead, recover space, and generate a private-sector company that would provide the same services to its investigators,” says CEO Donald Holzworth, who is also the founder and CEO of Analytical Sciences, EA’s incubator.

Other companies see an advantage in working with EA as well. In its first three months of operation, EA signed more than 20 clients, including big pharma and the NIH. “The companies that are utilizing this technology in-house are also coming to us for assistance. Either they have an overload of work they can’t perform or they’re coming to us for insight into some of their experimental design and analysis problems,” Holzworth says.

— Diana Jong

The Scan

Germline-Targeting HIV Vaccine Shows Promise in Phase I Trial

A National Institutes of Health-led team reports in Science that a broadly neutralizing antibody HIV vaccine induced bnAb precursors in 97 percent of those given the vaccine.

Study Uncovers Genetic Mutation in Childhood Glaucoma

A study in the Journal of Clinical Investigation ties a heterozygous missense variant in thrombospondin 1 to childhood glaucoma.

Gene Co-Expression Database for Humans, Model Organisms Gets Update

GeneFriends has been updated to include gene and transcript co-expression networks based on RNA-seq data from 46,475 human and 34,322 mouse samples, a new paper in Nucleic Acids Research says.

New Study Investigates Genomics of Fanconi Anemia Repair Pathway in Cancer

A Rockefeller University team reports in Nature that FA repair deficiency leads to structural variants that can contribute to genomic instability.