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Short Reads: Nov 1, 2002 (rev. 1)

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Applied Biosystems and Celera Genomics ended their long-term partnership with Compaq, announcing a systems overhaul that will entail new hardware and operating systems from IBM and storage systems from EMC.

 

Cytogen announced a reorganization of subsidiary AxCell Biosciences, including reducing the workforce by 75 percent, which is expected to enable the unit to continue its path in functional proteomics research. Rumors surfaced this summer that the underperforming Cytogen might sell AxCell to reduce R&D expenses.

 

US Genomics scored a $499,500 DARPA contract to study pathogen detection uses of its direct linear DNA analysis technology.

 

The Sanger Centre added a new supercomputer to its arsenal, a $22 million HP AlphaServer system that will more than double the center’s compute power.

 

In an attempt to break into profitability, DeCode Genetics publicized strategic plans to shed some 200 employees, bringing its total count down to 450 worldwide.

 

The National Center for Genome Resources and the Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center at Ohio State University will split a four-year, $1.9 million grant from the National Science Foundation for functional genomics.

Montreal’s SignalGene will spin off its functional genomics unit into a new company, which will be funded in part by a $6.1 million contribution from Genome Québec.

 

EGeen and the Estonian Genome Project Foundation unveiled lab facilities in Tartu, Estonia, for DNA sample processing and storage. The facilities are part of the three-year ramp-up to gathering Estonian genetic and medical data for a population study.

 

Systems biology company Gene Network Sciences won a $100,000 SBIR grant from the NIH to continue development of its colon cancer cell simulation.

 

Nematode genomics company Divergence received a $637,000 SBIR grant from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases to study nematode control agents.

 

Good moos for all: NHGRI added cow and dog to its high-priority genome sequencing model organism list. They join previous list members including chimp, chicken, and honeybee.

 

Aviva Biosciences sealed up close to $12 million in its B-round financing, bringing its since 1999.

 

A verdict on a 1995 case against Applied Biosystems as the heir to the Perkin-Elmer conglomerate came in, stating that ABI owes $13.3 million for infringement against Waters subsidiary TA Instruments.

 

The Scan

Pig Organ Transplants Considered

The Wall Street Journal reports that the US Food and Drug Administration may soon allow clinical trials that involve transplanting pig organs into humans.

'Poo-Bank' Proposal

Harvard Medical School researchers suggest people should bank stool samples when they are young to transplant when they later develop age-related diseases.

Spurred to Develop Again

New Scientist reports that researchers may have uncovered why about 60 percent of in vitro fertilization embryos stop developing.

Science Papers Examine Breast Milk Cell Populations, Cerebral Cortex Cellular Diversity, Micronesia Population History

In Science this week: unique cell populations found within breast milk, 100 transcriptionally distinct cell populations uncovered in the cerebral cortex, and more.