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Barney Saunders, Patrick Langlois, Craig Venter, Yash Gupta, Richard Murphy, Nanogen, The Broad Institute


People in the News

Barney Saunders has been named chief operating officer of Microchip Biotechnologies, the Fremont, Calif.-based company said last week.

Saunders previously worked at Agilent Technologies serving as general manager and vice president of bioresearch solutions, and senior director of science and technology in that company's Life Sciences and Chemical Analysis division.

Saunders spent 13 years at Amersham Biosciences in a variety of commercial and marketing positions before joining Agilent.

ExonHit Therapeutics has appointed Patrick Langlois to its supervisory board, the Paris-based firm said last week.

Langlois currently heads PJL Conseils, a consulting firm. He served as executive vice president of finance from 2000 to 2004 at Aventis, where he also was the vice president of the directorate from 2002 to 2005.

ExonHit said Langlois spent nearly 30 years working in the pharmaceutical and chemical industries with the Rhone Poulenc Group.

Craig Venter has been awarded this year's North American BioBusiness Leadership Award by the University of Southern California's Marshall Business School, USC said last week.

The award is the first in a series of regional and global BioBusiness Leadership Awards that "recognize leading individuals, organizations or corporations that exemplify the spirit of innovation, enterprise and entrepreneurship in areas of biobusiness," USC said.

Yash Gupta, USC Marshall dean, will present Venter with the award at a lunch ceremony at the Davidson Conference Center on the USC campus on December 7.

Richard Murphy has joined Accelrys as its senior vice president of worldwide sales and services, the company said last week.

Murphy most recently served as senior vice president, general manager, and chief sales officer of MSC Software.

Prior to MSC, he held senior technical leadership positions with PDA Engineering and Ford Aerospace. He received his BS in mechanical engineering technology from California State Polytechnic University in Pomona.


New Product Watch

Nanogen said last week that it has begun shipping its NanoChip 400 System, both domestically and in Europe.

The new system utilizes Nanogen's NanoChip 400 Microarray, which the company claims is suitable for developing homebrew molecular assays in mid- to high-volume clinical and research laboratories.

Nanogen said its NanoChip 400 system is "multi-purpose" and that it combines sample- and reagent-handling robotics with detection. The San Diego-based company said that the 400 system is capable of "multiple molecular applications, including the detection of SNPs and multi-gene targets."

The Broad Institute said this week that it will make its Gene Set Enrichment Analysis tool for microarray data analysis available for free on its website at

The institute said that GSEA is useful for researchers investigating gene networks and the mechanisms of disease and healthy states. Those that download the software will be able to access a database of 1,500 genes that are known to interact in biochemical pathways.

A paper describing GSEA was published in the Oct. 25 issue of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

The Scan

Purnell Choppin Dies

Purnell Choppin, a virologist who led the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, has died at 91, according to the Washington Post.

Effectiveness May Decline, Data From Israel Suggests

The New York Times reports that new Israeli data suggests a decline in Pfizer-BioNTech SARS-CoV-2 vaccine effectiveness against Delta variant infection, though protection against severe disease remains high.

To See Future Risk

Slate looks into the use of polygenic risk scores in embryo screening.

PLOS Papers on Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus, Bone Marrow Smear Sequencing, More

In PLOS this week: genomic analysis of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus pseudintermedius, archived bone marrow sequencing, and more.