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CombiMatrix, University of Washington, Cepheid, Eksigent Technologies, Agencourt Bioscience, Ambion, Sagres, Genome Institute of Singapore


CombiMatrix, University of Washington to Co-develop Array-Based Dx for Lymphoma

CombiMatrix and the University of Washington plan to co-develop a microarray-based test for diagnosing lymphoma, the two groups said last week.

A team of university researchers led by Daniel Sabath and Stephen Schmechel, at the Departments of Laboratory Medicine and Pathology in the School of Medicine, claimed to have identified a subset of genes whose expression pattern can “distinguish the various lymphoma types.” The goal of the collaboration is to harness those data and develop array-based diagnostics that detect lymphomas and predict clinical outcome.

To help develop and commercialize a potential product, CombiMatrix has penned an agreement with RationalDiagnostics. Last year, Seattle-based RationalDiagnostics, which was co-founded by Sabath and Schmechel, signed a deal with the University of Washington and the Washington Technology Center that ultimately helped uncover ways of using microarrays to diagnose lymphoma.

Cepheid Says US Postal Service Test of Anthrax Detection System a Success

Cepheid said this week that the US Postal Service has completed a successful 15-city test of its Biohazard Detection System (BDS), and would begin to deploy the system nationwide early in 2004. This announcement, the company said, came in an interview between a USPS representative and Global Security newswire Sept. 9. The system uses Cepheid’s DNA detection system to test the air surrounding mail handling equipment for anthrax spores, and automatically alerts officials by e-mail. Cepheid was originally awarded the $750,000 contract with the USPS for a pilot phase of the project in May 2002. In October 2002, Applied Biosystems announced it would be providing the reagents for the system.

Eksigent Collects $2 Million NIST Grant

Microfluidics company Eksigent Technologies of Livermore, Calif., won a $2 million grant from the National Institute of Standards and Technology’s Advanced Technology Program, the firm said last week.

The grant will help fund the company’s ChipLC system, which is designed to enable researchers to use high-performance liquid chromatography and perform highly parallel chip-based chemical analysis.

The ATP funding will be used for a three-year development program. Eksigent expects to commercialize intermediate-stage chip-based products in three years.

Agencourt Bioscience and Ambion enter Distribution Agreement

Agencourt Bioscience of Beverly, Mass., and Ambion of Austin, Texas, this week announced a distribution agreement on RNA amplification products.

Ambion will distribute AMPure, Agencourt's nucleic acid purification reagent, as a component in its MessageAmp RNA amplification kit.

Sagres, Genome Institute of Singapore to Collaborate on Oncogenomics

Sagres Discovery of Davis, Calif., and the Genome Institute of Singapore this week announced a research collaboration to study gene mutations in certain cancers and to discover networks of gene expression patterns in such cancers. GIS will apply its expression profiling technologies to characterize a collection of Sagres' proprietary provirus-tagged mouse tumors.

The Scan

Pfizer-BioNTech Seek Full Vaccine Approval

According to the New York Times, Pfizer and BioNTech are seeking full US Food and Drug Administration approval for their SARS-CoV-2 vaccine.

Viral Integration Study Critiqued

Science writes that a paper reporting that SARS-CoV-2 can occasionally integrate into the host genome is drawing criticism.

Giraffe Species Debate

The Scientist reports that a new analysis aiming to end the discussion of how many giraffe species there are has only continued it.

Science Papers Examine Factors Shaping SARS-CoV-2 Spread, Give Insight Into Bacterial Evolution

In Science this week: genomic analysis points to role of human behavior in SARS-CoV-2 spread, and more.