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More Doors Close, But a Crack of Light Gets Through

Two Massachusetts-based biotech companies folded this week, reports the Boston Globe. Epix Pharmaceuticals is undergoing liquidation, and Biopure has filed for Chapter 11. The Wall Street Journal's Health Blog says that not all biotechs are in trouble, adding that analysts say companies with promising late-stage compounds or products on the market are likely to have less trouble. Shocking.

The Cross-Border Biotech Blog, however, has a more optimistic post today, saying that there may be more incentives for funding biotechs. Jeremy Grushcow points to Human Genome Sciences' last report that surprised analysts and to a MoneyTree report from the National Venture Capital Association and PricewaterhouseCooper finding that, in the second quarter of this year, biotech was the biggest recipient of venture funds with $3.67 billion.

The Scan

Pig Organ Transplants Considered

The Wall Street Journal reports that the US Food and Drug Administration may soon allow clinical trials that involve transplanting pig organs into humans.

'Poo-Bank' Proposal

Harvard Medical School researchers suggest people should bank stool samples when they are young to transplant when they later develop age-related diseases.

Spurred to Develop Again

New Scientist reports that researchers may have uncovered why about 60 percent of in vitro fertilization embryos stop developing.

Science Papers Examine Breast Milk Cell Populations, Cerebral Cortex Cellular Diversity, Micronesia Population History

In Science this week: unique cell populations found within breast milk, 100 transcriptionally distinct cell populations uncovered in the cerebral cortex, and more.