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SNP Genetics, Illumina, Biotique, Monsanto, High Throughput Genomics, UCSD, Med BioGene, GenoLogics, Affymetrix, Empire Genomics

Korean Shop SNP Genetics Becomes Illumina Certified Service Provider
Korean company SNP Genetics will offer Illumina’s Infinium genotyping services and has been named an Illumina Certified Service Provider, Illumina said last week.
Illumina said SNP Genetics plans to conduct population and genome-wide scans for genetic factors behind common diseases.
Companies receiving Illumina’s certification as service providers must meet minimum data-generation requirements, data certification, and an audit of the facility, Illumina said.

Biotique Customizes Data-Management System for Monsanto
Biotique Systems said this week that it has tailored a bioinformatics data-integration system for Monsanto that the agricultural company will use for its global genomic and biotechnology research efforts.
Monsanto will use the customized BLIS, or Biotique Local Integration System, to integrate and manage microarray, pathway, and genetic-analysis data.
Biotique said BLIS includes several modules to facilitate processes used in transcription profiling and comparative genomics, and also offers a “data refinery” tool to detect splice variants.
Financial terms of the agreement were not released.

High Throughput Genomics, UCSD Team on Diabetes Gene Studies
High Throughput Genomics said this week it will collaborate with the University of California, San Diego, to generate arrays from mouse tissue samples and from cell lysates to evaluate genes tied to inflammation and insulin production.
Under the agreement, HTG will work with the UCSD Department of Medicine's Division of Endocrinology and Metabolism to study how insulin resistance and inflammation function in diabetes.
The agreement also calls for HTG to provide its ArrayPlate lysis-only quantitative Nuclease Protection Assay technology, or qNPA, platform, which the company said allows researchers to test any sample, including fixed tissues, without extraction or target amplification.

Med BioGene Hires Investment Advisors, Grants Execs 560K Common Shares
Canadian biomarker developer Med BioGene has hired an investment advisory and financial services company and has granted some of its executives options to buy up to 560,000 common shares at CA $.34 ($.32) a share, the company said this week.
Vancouver, BC-based MBI said it has hired Peterson Capital, an investment, financial services, and communications firm, for a monthly cash rate and the option to buy up to 100,000 shares at Can$.34 a share.
MBI CEO Erinn Broshko said Peterson has "a great track record in assisting small cap companies with investor relations and corporate communications," and that the partnership will complement MBI's ongoing relations with the Howard Group, a financial relations company based in Calgary.

GenoLogics Integrates Geneus Software With Affymetrix' Technology
GenoLogics has integrated its Geneus software with Affymetrix’ GeneChip technology through Affy’s compatibility program, GenoLogics said last week.
The Seattle-based company said it has worked with Affy to integrate its lab information-management system and scientific data-management software with the Affymetrix GeneChip platforms, GeneChip Operating Software, and the new GeneChip Command Console Software.

Empire Genomics Licenses Affy's Microarray Patents for Dx Development
Empire Genomics has non-exclusively licensed several of Affymetrix’s microarray-related patents to manufacture, use, and sell chips and related products and services for comparative genomic hybridization, Affy said last week.
Financial terms of the agreement were not released. Anthony Johnson, the CEO of Empire Genomics, told BioArray News in an e-mail this week that the licensing agreements will enable the firm to more freely serve the market.
“Empire Genomics has and continues to develop aCGH arrays with the potential to advance the discovery of genomic aberrations related to numerous disease states including cancer, autism, schizophrenia, mental retardation and several congenital abnormalities,” Johnson wrote.
“Licensing with Affymetrix gives us access to intellectual property that allows us to expand our technology in the microarray space.  This agreement allows us to continue to innovate our technology platforms to meet the needs of the global markets,” he wrote.

The Scan

International Team Proposes Checklist for Returning Genomic Research Results

Researchers in the European Journal of Human Genetics present a checklist to guide the return of genomic research results to study participants.

Study Presents New Insights Into How Cancer Cells Overcome Telomere Shortening

Researchers report in Nucleic Acids Research that ATRX-deficient cancer cells have increased activity of the alternative lengthening of telomeres pathway.

Researchers Link Telomere Length With Alzheimer's Disease

Within UK Biobank participants, longer leukocyte telomere length is associated with a reduced risk of dementia, according to a new study in PLOS One.

Nucleotide Base Detected on Near-Earth Asteroid

Among other intriguing compounds, researchers find the nucleotide uracil, a component of RNA sequences, in samples collected from the near-Earth asteroid Ryugu, as they report in Nature Communications.