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Lynx Signs Asthma SNP Detection Collaboration with AstraZeneca

NEW YORK, March 19 – Lynx Therapeutics has signed a collaboration with AstraZeneca to use its MegaType SNP detection technology to discover SNPs associated with asthma, the company said Tuesday.

Under the agreement, AstraZeneca will provide DNA samples from patients with asthma and from a control group, and Lynx of Menlo Park, Calif. will analyze the samples using the MegaType technology. MegaType involves Lynx's proprietary microbeads, which cleave to DNA fragments. 

In SNP detection, the beads with two different groups’ DNA fragments are pooled, then sorted to reveal the specific nucleotide differences between them. The advantage of MegaType over other SNP detection methods, according to Lynx, is that the detection of multiple SNPs can be completed in a single experiment rather than thousands or millions of assays.

AstraZeneca will pay Lynx an undisclosed sum at the beginning of the project, and will make milestone payments when certain of the project’s objectives are reached. The parties did not disclose further financial terms of the agreement.

“We are pleased AstraZeneca has chosen Lynx as a collaborator in asthma," Lynx CEO Norrie Russell said in a statement. "We believe that the rapid and comprehensive analysis of SNPs enabled by our Megatype technology should accelerate the understanding of this important disease." 

Earlier this month, Lynx signed a collaboration with Celera to integrate its gene expression data into Celera Discovery System.

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