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Nanogen, Lynx Therapeutics, Genomic Solutions, Illumina


Nanogen Reports Sagging Q1 Revenues, Bets on Success with CF Test  

So what if Nanogen had only $1.5 million in revenue for the first quarter. “2002 is shaping up just as anticipated and we are delivering,” said the company’s confident and single-minded CEO Randy White, in a first-quarter conference call last week.

While the company’s revenues shrank over 48 percent compared to the $2.9 million in the first quarter of 2001, its net losses widened to $7.5 million compared to $6.3 million for the year-ago period.

But product revenues tripled to $812,000 compared to $229,000 for the same period last year, a fact that White highlighted. “We are working hard to shift our revenue base from sponsored research programs to products-based revenues, the sales of both systems and consumables,” said White. “Make no mistake. This is a trend that we expect to continue.”

White and Chairman Howard Bierndorf further emphasized that the company is banking heavily on escalating revenues after it launches its Cystic Fibrosis analyte-specific-reagent kit near the end of June.

“The demand for cystic fibrosis screening has exploded this year,” said Bierndorf, citing a recent recommendation by the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists that all women considering pregnancy be screened with a 25-marker test to see if they are carriers of the disease. “Nanogen’s platform allows the screening of all 25 markers at once on a cartridge.”

Bierndorf estimated that the CF test, when implemented in a lab, would enable 480 patients to be screened per day at each workstation, and could easily be changed should the recommended screening markers change — a feature that other systems do not share.

“We expect this to have an important impact on system placements and consumable sales in the second half of the year,” he said.

The company said it expects 2002 revenues to total between $10 and $13 million, and its product revenue to range between 7 and 9 million.

As of the end of March, Nanogen had $60 million in cash, cash equivalents, and short-term investments.


Lynx Reports $5M in First-Quarter Revenues 

Just after roaring back on the scene with a cash infusion and cutting its workforce 30 percent, Lynx Therapeutics reported revenues of $5 million for the first quarter last week — a 48 percent increase from the 2001 first-quarter revenues.

Total operating expenses in the quarter grew slightly to $9 million from $8.6 million. This was led chiefly by mild growth in R&D spending, which grew to $6.9 million from $6.0 million in the year-ago period.

Given the increased revenues, the company’s net loss decreased to $3.8 million from $5.7 million for the first quarter of 2001.

The company had total cash, cash equivalents, and short-term investments of $1.9 million as of March 31, but completed a private equity financing of approximately $22.6 million in common stock and warrants to purchase common stock at the end of April.

Russell said the company plans to focus on the commercialization of its massively parallel signature sequencing technology, its flagship bead-based sequence-genotyping system, and to develop its ProteinProfiler technology.

“We believe this should provide us the opportunity to focus our resources and move us forward to profitability,” said Lynx CEO Norrie Russell. The company projects that it will bring in $30 million in revenues this year, and in doing so will turn “cash flow positive” by the end of the year.

Lynx is still seeking a commercialization partner for ProteinProfiler, and is looking to “find a foster home” for MegaType, its bead-based SNP technology.


Genomic Solutions Signs Asian Distribution Agreements 

Genomic Solutions has signed distribution agreements with two Asian distributors, Prisma Biotech in Taiwan, and Shin Won Scientific in Seoul, South Korea. The agreements enable these companies to distribute Genomic Solutions’ instruments, software, pre-printed arrays, and consumables in their respective countries, according to the Ann Arbor, Mich.-based company.

“These new agreements immediately expanded our instrument placements into the Pacific Rim with sales in this region exceeding our first quarter 2002 revenue forecast by over 10 percent,” stated Jeffrey S. Williams, president and CEO of Genomic Solutions. “We anticipate continued product placements in the Pacific Rim based upon the strong local presence of our new distributors.”

Genomic Solutions reported April 25 that its first quarter revenue totaled $6.7 million, a 52 percent gain over the previous year’s quarter.


Illumina Signs Genotyping Agreement to study Psoriasis and other Dermatological Conditions

  Illumina of San Diego, Calif., has signed a genotyping agreement with Placer, a biotechnology company that is looking at SNPs associated with complex diseases, including psoriasis.

Under the agreement, Illumina will use its BeadArrays, which sit in wells at the end of fiber optic stalks, to genotype SNPs in a sample collection that Placer provides.

The companies did not disclose the financial terms of the agreement.


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