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In Silico: Nov 1, 2001

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“We’ve looked AT a lot of companies and are firm believers in the idea that all of the activity is at the protein end, but we haven’t found anything exciting. How do you build a business around 2D gels?”

— Stephen Thompson, a director of global investment firm Apax Partners

Find “European VCs Grow Wary of Genomics” by searching: wary

 

Mouse House

Washington University’s Robert Waterston, head of its Genome Sequencing Center, expects his team to complete the initial shotgun sequencing of the mouse genome by December. He hopes to finish the mouse genome sequence by 2005.

Find “University Expects to Complete Shotgun Mouse Sequence in December” by searching: Waterston

 

Hope on the Horizon

Despite sharp drops in the stock market, a receding overall venture-capital tide, and the economic uncertainty brought on by the terrorist assault on the US, analysts believe the private equity environment for early-stage genomic companies remains robust, has been outperforming the overall VC market, and shows signs of growth in the new year.

Find “In Venture Capital Slump, Genomic Sector in 2001 Blasts Past Last Year’s Growth” by searching: slump

 

“If you open the hood of your car and you saw a banana plugged into where one of the spark plugs should go, you’d know that something was out of whack there. But we don’t have tools for looking at genomes in the same way.”

— Peter Karp, director of SRI International’s Bioinformatics Research Group

Find “Study Says AI-Based Methods Will Be Key to Advances in Systems Biology” by searching: AI

 

Two Cents

Peer review is a fundamental part of the scientific process, so why shouldn’t it be required for software too? Bioinformaticists have prompted an organized effort to encourage public funding agencies to formally support open-source software development.

Find “Petition Urges Public Funding Agencies to Formally Endorse Open-Source Software” by searching: petition

 

All That Glitters

The potential successor to microarrays looks a lot like glitter. It’s a handful of tiny silicon integrated circuits termed microtransponders, each smaller than the head of a pin. The inventor says these should be less expensive and can be used with or without PCR.

Find “New Jersey Startup Signals Next Generation in Arrays with Radio Transponder DNA Probes” by searching: radio

 

First Time Out

The inaugural issue of ProteoMonitor, a weekly newsletter covering proteomics technology and business news, will include a special report on how researchers are using proteomics to study the toxicology of biochemical warfare agents. In addition, it will feature reports on how big pharma is applying proteomics technology to drug development R&D, and an interview with Large Scale Proteomics’ CEO Leigh Anderson. A chart will compare the largest companies devoted to proteomics research on the basis of technology and equipment assets.

 

The Scan

Renewed Gain-of-Function Worries

The New York Times writes that the pandemic is renewing concerns about gain-of-function research.

Who's Getting the Patents?

A trio of researchers has analyzed gender trends in biomedical patents issued between 1976 and 2010 in the US, New Scientist reports.

Other Uses

CBS Sunday Morning looks at how mRNA vaccine technology could be applied beyond SARS-CoV-2.

PLOS Papers Present Analysis of Cervicovaginal Microbiome, Glycosylation in Model Archaea, More

In PLOS this week: functional potential of the cervicovaginal microbiome, glycosylation patterns in model archaea, and more.