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Gene Express, VWR, Illumina, Genome Canada, Partek, Sheba, Weizmann Institutes

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Gene Express, VWR Expand Distribution Agreement to 15 European Countries

Gene Express and VWR International have expanded their three-year agreement to resell and distribute Gene Express' automated gene-expression platform in 15 European countries, the companies said last week in a statement.

The agreement enlarges the companies' market for the Gene Express Standardized Expression Measurement Center platform beyond North America to include Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, France, The Netherlands, Belgium, Portugal, Spain, Italy, Great Britain, and Ireland, the statement said.

VWR's European sales organization includes 22 representatives trained in bio-services sales, the companies said.


Illumina to Pocket Additional $13.4M as Underwriters Exercise Stock Options

Illumina last week said it stands to pocket an additional $13.4 million after the underwriters for its public stock offering exercised their option to buy a maximum of 525,000 additional shares for $25.50 apiece.

The company said that a total of 4.025 million shares were sold in the stock offering for a net gain of $96.2 million. In total, Illumina is expected to pocket net proceeds of about $83.6 million from the sale, which the company announced earlier this month (see BAN 5/23/2006).

Goldman Sachs and Merrill Lynch performed joint bookrunning and acted as co-lead managers of the offering, while Cowen and Company and Robert W. Baird acted as co-lead managers.


Genome Canada Provides $16.7M to Six 'Platform' Labs

Genome Canada will provide more than CA$18.6 million ($16.7 million) to six science and technology centers over the next 15 months, funding services in DNA sequencing, genotyping, microarrays, proteomics, bioinformatics, genetic analysis, and DNA mapping, the agency said last week.

The centers, which the Canadian government calls "platforms," serve researchers funded by Genome Canada. The government said 20 percent of their activities are devoted to work related to other Canadian agencies. Two of the platforms are located in Vancouver while Victoria, Calgary, Toronto, and Montreal host one platform each.


Partek Licenses Genomics Software to Sheba, Weizmann Institutes

Partek announced last week that it has licensed its Partek Genomics Suite software to the Chaim Sheba Medical Center and the Weizmann Institute of Science.

The Tel Aviv, Israel-based Sheba Medical Center will use the software to statistically analyze data from its hemato-oncology studies. The Rehovot, Israel-based Weizmann Institute will use it to aid in research in a multitude of areas, including cancer, diabetes, nanoscience, and the environment.

Financial details were not discussed.

The Scan

Interfering With Invasive Mussels

The Chicago Tribune reports that researchers are studying whether RNA interference- or CRISPR-based approaches can combat invasive freshwater mussels.

Participation Analysis

A new study finds that women tend to participate less at scientific meetings but that some changes can lead to increased involvement, the Guardian reports.

Right Whales' Decline

A research study plans to use genetic analysis to gain insight into population decline among North American right whales, according to CBC.

Science Papers Tie Rare Mutations to Short Stature, Immunodeficiency; Present Single-Cell Transcriptomics Map

In Science this week: pair of mutations in one gene uncovered in brothers with short stature and immunodeficiency, and more.