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Lynx to Provide Genotyping Technology to Norwegian Fish Genomics Company

NEW YORK, April 11 – Lynx Therapeutics will provide its Megasort genotyping technology to GenoMar, a Norwegian marine genomics company, in a collaboration to identify genes in the Tilapia fish associated with saltwater tolerance, the companies said Wednesday.

GenoMar hopes to harness the genomic information from this collaboration to more selectively breed Tilapia, a common aquaculture fish known in the industry as the “aquatic chicken”, for saltwater farming environments. Saltwater fish farming is more common than freshwater farming in many parts of the world.

Under the agreement, GenoMar will provide Lynx with RNA samples from freshwater and saltwater-raised Tilapia fish, and Lynx will compare the genetic profiles of these fish using Megasort. GenoMar will pay Lynx an undisclosed sum for this service. The parties did not disclose further details of the collaboration.

"We believe that the application of Lynx's technologies to aquaculture further displays the broad commercial breadth and reach of our products," said Lynx CEO Norrie Russell in a statement.

Lynx's foundation technology, Megaclone, uses microbeads to sort millions of DNA molecules according to sequence. Each different molecule binds to a microbead, with each bead able to hold up to 100,000 identical molecules. Fluorescent tags on each bead indicate how much of a particular DNA molecule is on the bead.    

Megasort uses Megaclone to extract genes from two samples and compares their expression levels in a single assay. One probe from each sample is hybridized with a population of megaclone microbeads that have copies of DNA fragments or genes from each sample. The relative fluorescence of different beads indicates differences in expression.  

This collaboration follows on the heels of Lynx’s April 4 th  agreement to provide MegaSort technology to AstraZeneca for studies of differential gene expression in disease .

In addition to its collaborations with GeneMar and AstraZeneca, Lynx has recently signed technology partnerships with UroGene, Celera, and five academic development partners, including researchers at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, at Dallas; the Wellcome Trust Centre for Molecular Mechanisms in Disease at the University of Cambridge; the Howard Hughes Medical Institute and Mount Sinai School of Medicine; and the New York State Department of Health and Columbia University.

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