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Promega and Accelr8 Technology, Northwestern Ontario Technology Centre, and Agilent Technologies


Promega Licenses Accelr8's Microarray Surface Chemistry

Accelr8 Technology said this week that it may license its OptiChem surface chemistry to Promega for use in microarraying slides.

According to documentation filed with the SEC this week, Promega will evaluate Accelr8's technology under a feasibility testing agreement before it agrees to distribute the slides to third parties. The agreement, set to expire in Sept. 2006, calls for Promega to pay Accelr8 $49,000 for the initial evaluation period, which, if successful, will result in an official licensing agreement. Any enhancements developed during the testing period will be owned by Accelr8. Inventions developed afterwards will be jointly owned by Accelr8 and Promega.

The OptiChem coatings are thin organic films that provide selective biomolecule binding with very low non-specific adsorption, according to the company.

Northwestern Ontario Technology Centre Opens New $1.4M Lab

The Northwestern Ontario Technology Centre, a joint effort of Genesis Genomics and Lakehead University's Paleo-DNA laboratory, opened a new $1.4 million microarray lab last week, according to a report a local newspaper.

Ontario's Chronicle Journal reported that the new lab, opened in Thunder Bay, will be used by researchers for work in pathogen, cancer, agricultural, and industrial research. The facility and its equipment was purchased through a partnership with LU, along with grants from FedNor and the Northern Ontario Heritage Fund, the paper reported.

Agilent's Sale of Semiconductor Unit Delayed to December

Agilent Technologies said last week it expects to close the sale of its semiconductor operations to private equity firms Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co. and Silver Lake Partners "on or near" Dec. 1, which is later than originally planned.

When Agilent announced the sale in August, it said the deal would close by Oct. 31. Agilent did not mention the delay in a statement last week, but it said that the "target closing date is timed to position the companies to provide a seamless transition for customers, suppliers, and employees in the 19 countries in which [the Semiconductor Products Group] operates."

Agilent said in August that it will sell its chip unit to the buyout firms, which will be equal partners in the venture, for $2.66 billion. Kohlberg and Silver Lake said at the time that their purchase will create the world's largest privately held independent semiconductor company.

Agilent previously said it plans to use proceeds from the deal for a $4 billion share repurchase program.


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.