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Lumera, Power3 Medical Products, Cepheid, Lynx Therapeutics, MWG Biotech, GenoMed, Strand Genomics


Lumera Files for IPO

Bothell, Wash.-based Lumera, a majority owned subsidiary of Microvision, has filed a registration statement with the US Securities and Exchange Commission for a proposed initial public offering of 5,000,000 shares of its common stock, a move that could raise as much as $28 million based on pricing of between $5 to $6 a share. The company, which makes antennas for wireless communications and biochips, plans to trade on the Nasdaq SmallCap Market. For more about the company, please see BAN 5/12/2004.

Power3 Medical Products Acquires ProteEx for $15M

Power3 Medical Products has acquired proteomics start-up ProteEx for $15 million, the company said last week.

Power3, a holding company, purchased ProteEx, based in The Woodlands, Texas, for 15 million shares of its common stock, worth approximately $15 million. Following the acquisition, Power3, which had $12,000 in revenues during the first quarter of 2004, mainly from selling a surgical safety device, will move its offices to ProteEx’s site.

ProteEx, previously known as Advanced Bio/Chem, has been developing biomarkers for breast cancer in collaboration with the MD Anderson Cancer Center.

Cepheid Receives $1.9M NCI Phase II Grant For Validating GeneXpert Platform

Cepheid this week reported that it has received a $1.9 million grant from the National Cancer Institute to validate its quantitative PCR-based platform for detecting tumor markers, the company said.

Under the two-year Phase II grant, scientists from Cepheid, the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, and the Medical University of South Carolina will test and validate Cepheid’s GeneXpert platform, which is based on quantitative reverse transcription PCR, for studying breast cancer and melanoma. The researchers will use the system to detect RNA from cancer cells in lymph node cross sections.

Cepheid will receive approximately $900,000 for the first year of the grant.

Lynx Signs Service Agreement with NIMH To Study Gene Expression in the Brain

Lynx Therapeutics has signed a service contract with the National Institute of Mental Health to study gene expression in the brain, the company said last week.

Under the agreement, with NIMH’s Genes, Cognition, and Psychosis program, Lynx will use its Massively Parallel Signature Sequencing technology to analyze gene expression in a region of the brain cortex that has been implicated in schizophrenia.

Lynx will receive payments for its services on samples provided by NIMH.

MWG Biotech to Open Subsidiary in India

MWG Biotech will open a subsidiary in India on June 1, the Ebersberg, Germany-based company said last week.

The new production and sales unit in Bangalore will eventually offer all of MWG’s products and services in the Asia-Pacific region. Initially, it will produce and sell HPSF oligonucleotides and sequencing products and offer a hybridization service. The company will also distribute in India microarrays manufactured in its European facility.

MWG said it expects to earn €2.5 million ($3 million) in revenues in India in 2005 from oligonucleotides alone.

GenoMed Taps McGill University and Genome Quebec Innovation Center for SNP Screening

GenoMed will pay CA$1.2 million ($863,000) to McGill University and the Genome Quebec Innovation Center in exchange for genotyping an undisclosed number of SNPs, the company said last week.

The service, which will be performed on Illumina’s genotyping platform, will try to screen between 10,000 and 30,000 SNPs at a time, according to David Moskowitz, chairman and CEO of GenoMed.

Moskowitz said GenoMed is seeking a variety of cancer predisposition genes, and said the screening process should take approximately four months. After that, the company will seek a service provider to validate any hits discovered in the screening.

Strand Genomics Expands Distribution Agreement with Canada’s UBI

Strand Genomics of Bangalore, India, has expanded its distribution agreement with Canada-based UBI for its Avadis software, the company said this week.

Avadis is a microarray gene expression data analysis tool that supports both spotted arrays and the Affymetrix platform.

UBI, based in Calgary, specializes in distributing bioinformatics software.

The Scan

Study Points to Tuberculosis Protection by Gaucher Disease Mutation

A mutation linked to Gaucher disease in the Ashkenazi Jewish population appears to boost Mycobacterium tuberculosis resistance in a zebrafish model of the lysosomal storage condition, a new PNAS study finds.

SpliceVault Portal Provides Look at RNA Splicing Changes Linked to Genetic Variants

The portal, described in Nature Genetics, houses variant-related messenger RNA splicing insights drawn from RNA sequencing data in nearly 335,700 samples — a set known as the 300K-RNA resource.

Automated Sequencing Pipeline Appears to Allow Rapid SARS-CoV-2 Lineage Detection in Nevada Study

Researchers in the Journal of Molecular Diagnostics describe and assess a Clear Labs Dx automated workflow, sequencing, and bioinformatic analysis method for quickly identifying SARS-CoV-2 lineages.

UK Team Presents Genetic, Epigenetic Sequencing Method

Using enzymatic DNA preparation steps, researchers in Nature Biotechnology develop a strategy for sequencing DNA, along with 5-methylcytosine and 5-hydroxymethylcytosine, on existing sequencers.