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Nanogen Gets Clinical

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Nanogen has a new CEO, and he has no doubts about why he’s there. “My leadership comes in to help transition the company into clinical diagnostics,” says Randy White. He says he’s the right person to lead the company there because “that’s where I came from.”

White’s experience includes almost two decades with National Health Laboratories, seven years as an independent consultant, and a couple of years at American Medical Laboratories, where he was most recently executive vice president of technical operations.

Now, White will lead Nanogen from pure research into applied genomics. “We’re not abandoning our research base,” he says. “That’s what took us here. We’re going to be a bifocal company.”

But as Nanogen continues with research and technology development (with existing and future partners, White says), the company will also push into developing genomics-based clinical tools. And unlike other companies that consider this a far-off concept, the new CEO doesn’t plan to wait around. “[Nanogen] is, in the very near term, capable of providing clinical diagnostic tests,” he says.

The groups that will make the most of this technology are medium-sized laboratories and hospital labs. “This will allow very complex genomic assays to be performed for less sophisticated labs. And it will allow very sophisticated labs to commercialize tests that don’t even exist today,” White says.

The other incentive, of course, is money. “We think our technology will ultimately result in a lowering of the cost to perform the testing by as much as half,” he says.

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