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Illumina, Affymetrix, GE Healthcare, Nyrion, LabCorp, Roche, ParAllele, Broad Institute, Nanogen, Implen


Despite Increased Losses, Flatley Says Illumina on Track to Profitability in '06

Despite an increase in net loss in its second quarter, Illumina's CEO Jay Flatley said that the company is on track to become profitable by the end of 2006, although he declined to be more specific.

"We have not given specific guidance on when we will turn profitable other than for the full year 2006," Flatley wrote in an e-mail to BioArray News following the release of the company's second-quarter results last week.

Illumina's net loss amounted to $18.5 million, or $.46 per share, up from $3.5 million, or $.10 per share, during last year's second quarter. This included a $15.8 million writeoff of in-process research and development that Illumina acquired with CyVera in April.

The company's stock took a hit as well in the wake of the news, tumbling 19.6 percent, trading at $11.16 at mid-day Aug. 1, down from $13.84 at close on July 26, the day the results were released.

Revenues totaled $15.8 million for the quarter, a 38-percent increase over last year's $11.5 million for the same period. The company's research and development expenses also climbed to $7.3 million, up from $5.3 million during the year-ago period.

Flatley said that Illumina is still committed to putting out 500K SNP arrays on schedule by mid-2006, but that 250K chips would be available sooner and would be "stepping stones to get there."

Affymetrix Posts 11-Percent Rise in Q2 Profit; Reiterates Q3 Closing for ParAllele Acquisition

Affymetrix reported a 5 percent year-over-year increase in revenues and an 11 percent increase in net income for the second quarter of 2005 late last month.

Total revenue rose to $84.1 million from $79.8 million in the second quarter of 2004. Of the company's total revenues, $1.9 million was attributed to the sale of products to Perlegen Sciences in the current quarter, compared to $1.4 million in sales to Perlegen in the year-ago period.

Affymetrix reported an increase in net income to $7.8 million, or $.12 per diluted share, from $7.0 million, or $.11 per diluted share, in the prior-year period.

The company did not meet analyst earnings estimates of $.17 per share for the quarter, however.

Affymetrix increased quarterly R&D spending to $20.8 million from $17.8 million in the second quarter of 2004.

The company had cash and cash equivalents of $27 million on hand as of June 30.

Affymetrix reiterated its plans to close its acquisition of ParAllele in the third quarter. As a result, the company expects to incur merger-related charges for in-process R&D of $15 million and operational charges of $7 million in the third quarter.

For the third quarter, Affymetrix has forecast total revenue of $95 million and a net loss per share of $.06 — below analyst estimates of net income of net income of $.29 per share.

Affymetrix reiterated its previous guidance of $405 million in total revenues for the full year.

GE Healthcare Accredits Scotland's Nyrion to Offer CodeLink Array Services

Nyrion, a gene-knockdown and expression-analysis shop, has been accredited by GE Healthcare to offer CodeLink microarrays as part of an expression-analysis service, according to officials from both companies.

Peter Estibeiro, managing director of the Edinburgh, Scotland-based startup, said that Nyrion has been accredited to offer CodeLink as part of its service in the UK market, as well as to international customers.

Estibeiro spoke with BioArray News at the BioScience 2005 conference, held in Glasgow last month.

Penny Owen, a GE Healthcare marketing director, confirmed the deal had closed in recent weeks.

In addition to the CodeLink offering, Nyrion sells antisense and siRNA reagents on its AccessArray 4000 system, as well as other reagents, according to the company's commercial literature.

According to a statement later released by Nyrion, the company will use CodeLink arrays to identify gene targets of interest and then use its AccessArray "to control the levels of specific genes of interest."

"It gives considerable insight into how genes normally interact and how those interactions go wrong in disease," Estebeiro said in the statement.

LabCorp to Validate Roche's AmpliChip, Help Evaluate Leukemia Microarray

Laboratory Corporation of America will start validating Roche Diagnostics' AmpliChip CYP450 and will help Roche evaluate its research leukemia microarray, which is currently in development, the company said last month.

Roche's AmpliChip CYP450, which is built around Affymetrix's DNA chips, is designed to help physicians select dosing regimens for drugs covering a broad array of conditions, including cardiac diseases, chronic pain, cancer, and common psychiatric disorders.

Roche's leukemia microarray, which also uses AmpliChip technology, is designed to identify subclasses of leukemia.

Broad Institute to Use Affy's 500K Arrays in Large-Scale Genotyping Study

The Broad Institute will use Affymetrix's genotyping arrays to conduct whole-genome association studies looking into the genetic causes of cancer, cardiovascular, metabolic, and neuropsychiatric diseases, Affy said last month.

Institute researchers and their collaborators in academia and industry plan to use Affy's GeneChip Mapping 500K arrays to analyze 12,000 human DNA samples, generating more than 6 billion genotypes. They also plan to develop new laboratory and analysis methods for the arrays, which they will use under an early access program.

Affymetrix said it expects to launch the 500K arrays commercially later this year.

Nanogen Gets $2.5M from NIH to Develop Prototype Diagnostic for Sepsis, Pneumonia

Nanogen has received a $2.5 million grant from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases to develop a prototype diagnostic for sepsis and community-acquired pneumonia, the company said this week.

Under the five-year grant, Nanogen will collaborate with the Medical College of Wisconsin to provide an automated diagnostic system to rapidly detect bacteria and viruses that cause sepsis and pneumonia.

Mortality from sepsis ranges from 28 percent to 50 percent, according to the company, and pneumonia is the seventh leading cause of death in the US.

German Microarray Reagent Provider Implen Opens Swiss Office

Implen has opened an office in Switzerland, the Munich-based provider of microarray reagents said last month.

The office is located in Zumikon, near Zurich. Implen sells a wide range of microarray-related reagents for labeling, hybridization, and post-hybridization treatment.

Implen is also a distributor for Advalytix, based in Brunnthal, Germany, and for Hatfield, Penn.-based Genisphere in Germany, Austria, and Switzerland.

The Scan

Study Tracks Responses in Patients Pursuing Polygenic Risk Score Profiling

Using interviews, researchers in the European Journal of Human Genetics qualitatively assess individuals' motivations for, and experiences with, direct-to-consumer polygenic risk score testing.

EHR Quality Improvement Study Detects Demographic-Related Deficiencies in Cancer Family History Data

In a retrospective analysis in JAMA Network Open, researchers find that sex, ethnicity, language, and other features coincide with the quality of cancer family history information in a patient's record.

Inflammatory Bowel Disease Linked to Gut Microbiome Community Structure Gradient in Meta-Analysis

Bringing together data from prior studies, researchers in Genome Biology track down microbial taxa and a population structure gradient with ties to ulcerative colitis or Crohn's disease.

Ancient Greek Army Ancestry Highlights Mercenary Role in Historical Migrations

By profiling genomic patterns in 5th century samples from in and around Himera, researchers saw diverse ancestry in Greek army representatives in the region, as they report in PNAS.