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Affymetrix, Wisconsin Institute, DOCRO, Nanogen, Empire Genomics, Expression Analysis, GeneGo

Affymetrix, Wisconsin Institute to Pursue Genes Linked to Childhood Diseases
Affymetrix and the Children’s Research Institute in Wisconsin will use Affy’s GeneChip technology to identify genetic variations linked to common, complex childhood diseases, Affy said this week.
CRI, a non-profit medical research arm of the Children's Hospital and Health System affiliated with the Medical College of Wisconsin, intends to use the data from the large-scale studies to develop diagnostics, and to “show the clinical utility of array-based molecular diagnostics,” Affy said. 
Affy is conducting the five-year partnership through its Translational Medicine Program.

Affy Clinical Services, DOCRO Pen Deal to Help Customers Advance Their IVDs
Affymetrix’s Clinical Services Laboratory and in vitro diagnostic contract research company DOCRO have formed a partnership to help pharmaceutical companies, IVD makers, and other customers move their products toward clearance by the US Food and Drug Administration, Affymetrix said this week.
The agreement offers its ACSL customers validation and clinical trial services such as protocol design, patient recruitment, clinical site training and monitoring, sample procurement, device testing, and guidance for the submission process.
Affy said DOCRO will supply its ACSL customers “a clear path and understanding of how to commercialize IVD products.”

Nanogen Licenses Schizophrenia Biomarkers From Aussie Groups
Nanogen has licensed genetic markers related to schizophrenia and to antipsychotic drug response from Australia’s Co-Operative Research Centre for Diagnostics and Queensland University of Technology.
Nanogen said it will use the markers to develop diagnostics for schizophrenia and “related conditions,” and said that some of the markers may be useful in predicting adverse drug reactions. The company said these markers have been linked to the disease “in a number of clinical studies.”
Financial terms of the agreement were not released.
Nanogen President and COO David Ludvigson said that effective schizophrenia diagnostics and treatments may “require multiplexed analytic methods capable of examining multiple genes simultaneously” because the disease may be caused by mutations in multiple genes.
The genetic component of schizophrenia may account for between 65 percent and 80 percent of the risk for the disease.

Empire Genomics Licenses Roswell Park's Genomics Libraries, Accesses Labs, Personnel
Empire Genomics has licensed Roswell Park Cancer Institute’s genomic libraries, and will temporarily use its laboratory space, equipment, and expertise, RPCI said last week.
Empire Genomics, a spin-out of RPCI and the University of Buffalo that offers human and mouse BAC microarrays, is developing a prenatal and postnatal diagnostic array using RPCI’s genomic libraries that will test for 100 different microdeletions, including those linked to various diseases.
Empire President and CEO Anthony Johnson said the company expects to continue to operate out of RPCI’s labs for around a year, and then to move into new facilities on the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus, near the RPCI.
Johnson said the company expects to hire as many as 60 new staffers over the next five years.
Financial terms of the agreement were not released.

Expression Analysis to Use GeneGo Software for Functional Analysis Service
Genomic services firm Expression Analysis will use GeneGo’s 1-2-3-Workflow technology to provide functional analysis of pathways and networks as add-on services, GeneGo said last week.
Under the multi-year agreement, Expression Analysis will submit to GeneGo data from various customers, including pharmaceutical companies, biotechs, and academic institutions, Julie Bryant, GeneGo’s vice president of business development and marketing, said in a statement.
GeneGo’s 1-2-3-Workflow compares multiple expression datasets, conducts enrichment analyses in multiple areas such as disease, pathways, and processes, and provides other analytical services. It returns these data in a Microsoft Word document within 24 hours.
Financial terms of the agreement were not released.

The Scan

Gap in COVAX Doses

BBC News reports that COVAX is experiencing a vaccine shortfall, as the Serum Institute of India has paused exports.

Sanofi, GSK Report Promising Results

The Wall Street Journal reports that the candidate SARS-CoV-2 vaccine from Sanofi and GlaxoSmithKline has had encouraging early results.

Influence of Luck

The New York Times examines how the US avoided variant-fueled increases in COVID-19 cases.

PLOS Papers on Retina GWAS, Hantaan Virus, COVID-19 Phenome-Wide Association Study

In PLOS this week: genome-wide association study of retinal morphology, analysis of hantaan virus found in a mouse, and more.