Skip to main content
Premium Trial:

Request an Annual Quote

In Brief This Week: Agilent, Bionano Genomics, Opko Health, and More

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb) – Agilent Technologies this week filed a second amendment in its lawsuit against Twist Bioscience and Emily Leproust. The proposed second amended complaint adds two additional defendants, Twist employee Siyuan Chen and former Twist employee Solange Glaize, and adds what Agilent called "new facts that were recently discovered regarding the defendants' wide-ranging theft of Agilent's proprietary oligonucleotide synthesis technology."

Agilent originally filed its complaint more than two years ago against Twist, LeProust, and 20 other unnamed defendants for breach of contract, breach of the duty of loyalty, and misappropriation of trade secrets, alleging that the defendants spent months as Agilent employees laying the groundwork for theft of Agilent IP related to oligonucleotide synthesis before leaving the company and founding Twist. Agilent then filed a motion to amend the complaint this August.

Also this week, Agilent declared a quarterly dividend of $.15 per share of common stock, to be paid on Oct. 24 to all shareholders of record as of the close of business on Oct. 2.

Bionano Genomics said this week that the units the company sold in its initial public offering are now trading separately in accordance with their terms. Each unit consisted of one share of common stock and one warrant to purchase one share of common stock. As of today, the shares of common stock and the warrants are trading separately on the Nasdaq Capital Market under the symbols "BNGO" and "BNGOW," respectively. The units, which previously traded under the symbol "BNGOU," are no longer listed.

Multiple law firms this week announced the filing of class action lawsuits against Opko Health in response to a complaint filed earlier this month by the US Securities and Exchange Commission. The SEC announced on Sept. 7 that Opko and its CEO Phillip Frost, along with ten other individuals and 10 associated companies, were being charged with participating in market manipulation schemes that generated more than $27 million in unlawful stock sales.

The class action suits are in the investigative stages, seeking investors that purchased securities between Sept. 26, 2013 and Sept. 7, 2018. One class action complaint filed by Scott+Scott Attorneys at Law alleges that the company "failed to disclose that Opko and its chairman and chief executive officer Phillip Frost, were engaged in a pump-and-dump scheme with several other individuals and companies," and that the scheme would result in governmental scrutiny, which resulted in statements about the company's business prospects being materially false.

Opko and Frost have accused the SEC suit of containing "serious factual inaccuracies." 

Trading of Opko's stock was halted by Nasdaq on Sept. 7 as a result of the lawsuit, but resumed trading on in the afternoon of Sept. 14.

Applied DNA Sciences announced this week that it has formed a subsidiary called LineaRx, for the purpose of commercializing the company's experience in the design, manufacture, and chemical modification of DNA by large scale PCR in the field of biotherapeutics — specifically gene and cellular therapies as well as vaccines. The company said it believes the addressable biotherapeutic markets for LineaRx include gene therapy, immuno-oncology, and DNA vaccines. Applied DNA plans to license multiple patents for therapeutic applications to LineaRx, including the rights to manufacture DNA via PCR using Applied DNA's systems under cGMP conditions, including the capacity for remote control that would allow rapid manufacture in a distributed network that could even include the battlefield or within hospitals that practice gene therapies such as CRISPR or cellular therapies such as CART.

LineaRx will also take over the firm's current activities as a Contract Research Organization and Contract Manufacturing Organization to the biotherapeutics market.

BioAffinity Technologies said this week that the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York will serve as a clinical collection site for the test validation trial of CyPath Lung, BioAffinity's non-invasive test for the early detection of lung cancer.

In conjunction with the Biden Cancer Initiative's annual summit, Syapse announced this week that it has added Ascension, Banner Health, Inova Health, LSU Health, OhioHealth, and Seoul National University Hospital to its Syapse Learning Health Network. This data-sharing network for precision oncology now includes 412 hospitals in the US and South Korea.

In Brief This Week is a selection of news items that may be of interest to our readers but had not previously appeared on GenomeWeb.