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Donald Brydon, Richard Lapthorne, Amit Kumar, Rigdon Currie, Jose Ordovas, Marcia Kean, Michelle Lyles, Melanie Mahtani, Vern Norviel


Donald Brydon, non-executive director of Amersham, will replace Richard Lapthorne as chairman in May, the company announced. Lapthorne was chairman for four years while Brydon has served in his role since 1997. He is chairman of AXA Investment Managers. Cable & Wireless announced that Lapthorne had accepted the position of non-executive chairman of the telecom concern.

Amit Kumar and Rigdon Currie, of the board of directors of subsidiary CombiMatrix, have been named to the board of directors of Acacia Research of Newport Beach, Calif., the company announced last week. Kumar is the CEO and president of CombiMatrix of Mukilteo, Wash. Acacia Research is the holding company for CombiMatrix, which manufactures genomic technology including biochips, and Acacia Technologies, which produces the v-chip for television. The two groups were recently launched as tracking stocks. Kumar has led CombiMatrix since 2001 and has been a director of the company since 2000, when he was president and CEO of Signature BioSciences. He holds a PhD from the California Institute of Technology. Rigdon, a independent venture capital consultant, holds an MBA from

Harvard Business School


Jose Ordovas, a professor of nutrition and genetics at Tufts University, has joined Perlegen’s scientific advisory board, the company said last week. Ordovas’s research focuses on genes that control blood lipids. Ordovas holds a PhD in biochemistry from the University of Zaragoza, Spain.

Marcia Kean has been named chief executive officer of Feinstein Kean Healthcare, a Cambridge, Mass., public relations firm she helped found and then sold to Ogilvy Public Relations Worldwide. Kean, who holds an MBA in finance from New York University, was senior vice president, commercialization, for Ardais of Lexington, Mass.

Michelle Lyles and Melanie Mahtani join GenoSpectra of Fremont, Calif., as business unit managers. Lyles, formerly ultraHTS technology manager at PerkinElmer, joins the company as the manager for biochemical and cell-based assays. Mahtani, former director of micro array systems R&D at Amersham BioSciences, will manage gene expression systems.

Vern Norviel has joined the Palo Alto, Calif., law firm of Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati as partner in the life sciences techn ology and patent practice. Norviel was general counsel and corporate secretary for Perlegen Sciences and previously, he was senior vice president and general counsel at Affymetrix, as well as a partner with the law firm of Townsend and Crew. He was a member of the US Patent Office public advisory committee and is an adjunct professor of law at the University of California, Santa Clara.


The Scan

Shape of Them All

According to BBC News, researchers have developed a protein structure database that includes much of the human proteome.

For Flu and More

The Wall Street Journal reports that several vaccine developers are working on mRNA-based vaccines for influenza.

To Boost Women

China's Ministry of Science and Technology aims to boost the number of female researchers through a new policy, reports the South China Morning Post.

Science Papers Describe Approach to Predict Chemotherapeutic Response, Role of Transcriptional Noise

In Science this week: neural network to predict chemotherapeutic response in cancer patients, and more.