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


Agencourt Bioscience teamed up with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the University of Maryland School of Medicine to sequence the genome of the bacterium Rickettsia sibirica.


AniGenics, an animal genomics company based in Chicago, changed its name to Pyxis Genomics.


In its largest award yet for bioinformatics, the National Institute of Standards and Technology gave Paradigm Genetics and Lion Bioscience a five-year, $11.7 million ATP grant to support the development of a technology suite to improve the success rate of validated targets.


Cray has allied itself with Germany’s Konrad-Zuse-Zentrum fur Informationstechnik Berlin and Bielefeld University to develop new software products aimed at bioinformatics problems, such as EST clustering, protein database searches, and protein structure prediction.


California-based Bio-Rad Laboratories acquired the microarray and robotics technologies business unit of Virtek Biotech Canada for approximately $7 million. The division’s operations are expected to continue in Canada.


Launched to compete with the likes of Science and Nature, the free-access publication Journal of Biology set up shop this summer with members of the Public Library of Science on its editorial board.


Celera Diagnostics and Abbott Laboratories formed a partnership to develop, manufacture, and market in vitro molecular diagnostic tools for disease detection and therapy selection.


Iceland Genomics and Myriad Genetics are working jointly on a project for the discovery of a cancer gene.


Molecular Devices bought Universal Imaging, a cellular imaging and screening company, for $22 million in cash for the 52-person firm.


MetaMorphix announced 1x coverage of the sequence of the cattle genome and that it also had generated a dense SNP map. Celera did the heavy work; MetaMorphix bought the company’s animal genomics and genotyping division, inheriting the cattle project.


Sequenom of San Diego and Korea’s Samsung Advanced Institute of Technology joined together in a research collaboration that will include genome-wide screens to identify possible disease-related markers, which SAIT will use in its biochip development.


Insightful, an enterprise software solutions provider, won a two-year, $750,000 grant from the NIH to build a genomic data-mining toolkit.


Just what you needed: another bioinformatics conference! IEEE Computer Society is hosting this one, which will be held for the first time at Stanford University this month. Keynote speakers include Lee Hood, Bernhard Palsson, and Russ Altman.


Enron was bad enough, but WorldCom sealed the deal. Qiagen and Genome Therapeutics recently changed their independent auditors from the embattled Arthur Andersen to Ernst & Young. Both companies stressed that they had had no disagreements or problems with Andersen before switching.


Use the Force, Luke. And don’t let the Dark Side of the Genome get you. AnVil’s collaboration with Applied Biosystems seeks to identify “dark genes,” whose presence is predicted by computer but otherwise unconfirmed.


Syrrx formed a research collaboration with Sankyo of Japan. Syrrx, which got an up-front access fee, will use its protein structure determination tools to study Sankyo’s drug targets.


NHGRI launched a redesigned website at its new address, The new site should be more user-friendly and comprehensive.