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In Brief This Week: Bionano Genomics, Agena Bioscience, Weill Cornell Medicine, and More

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb) – In an updated preliminary prospectus filed with the US Securities and Exchange Commission this month, Bionano Genomics provided a price range for its planned initial public offering. The company said it will offer nearly 3.4 million shares of its common stock at $8 to $10 per share. The company had filed its preliminary prospectus in June.

Agena Bioscience said this week that it has been selected to participate in the Cancer-ID Consortium, whose goal is to establish standard protocols for and the clinical validation of the use of blood-based biomarkers for cancer. Agena's MassArray system will be used to support mutation detection from liquid biopsy samples as part of Cancer-ID's work in lung cancer and breast cancer. The European consortium brings together experts in CTCs, ctDNA, and cfmiRNA to monitor the efficacy of treatment and potentially improve treatment options for cancer.

Weill Cornell Medicine announced this week that it has been accepted into the National Cancer Institute's Molecular Analysis for Therapy Choice (MATCH) designated laboratory network. As such, the institution can run its New York state-approved Exome Cancer Test version 1.0 (EXaCT-1), Oncomine, and 50-gene panel tests on tumor samples to help enroll patients in the MATCH clinical trial. Weill Cornell's New York Presbyterian Hospital launched EXaCT-1 whole-exome sequencing for clinical cancer care late last year and has integrated results from the test into its electronic health records.

Biocept said this week that it has received a letter from the Nasdaq indicating that its common stock has regained compliance with minimum listing price requirements. The firm was told in January that it had failed to comply with a $1 per share minimum bid price requirement. As of July 24, the Nasdaq said that the stock had regained the aforementioned minimum closing bid price for at least 10 consecutive business days.

Healthcare marketing and supplies firm SmartPractice announced this week that it has donated $50,000 to the Translational Genomics Research Institute (TGen) for quicker and more accurate monitoring of breast cancer. SmartPractice has now contributed $175,000 towards TGen's development of a liquid biopsy test since 2015. Specifically, this most recent donation will help TGen analyze blood samples from a clinical trial at the Mayo Clinic's Arizona campus to help evaluate if more breast cancer patients may benefit from the institute's test. TGen has developed a technology called Targeted Digital Sequencing, or TARDIS, to more precisely capture and measure ctDNA and use that information to help treat patients, SmartPractice noted.

PerkinElmer said this week that its board has declared a regular quarterly dividend of $.07 per share of common stock, payable on Nov. 9 to all shareholders of record on Oct. 19.

Becton Dickinson's board this week declared a quarterly dividend of $.75 per share, payable on Sept. 28 to shareholders of record on Sept. 7. The indicated annual dividend rate is $3 per share, the company said. BD's board also declared a quarterly dividend of $15.31 per share on 6.125 percent mandatory convertible preferred stock, Series A, payable on Nov. 1 to holders of record on Oct. 15.

The Pistoia Alliance said this week that it is now accepting entries for its 2018 President's Startup Challenge through Sept. 3. The contest is open to new informatics and technology companies addressing barriers in life sciences R&D. Five finalists will get the chance to pitch their ideas at the Pistoia Alliance's US conference on Oct. 10, and two winners will receive $20,000 each, plus entry into a six-month mentorship program.

Angle Plc this week announced its preliminary financial results for the fiscal year ended April 30. The liquid biopsy company reported revenues increased to £700,000 ($917,847) from £500,000 in 2017. The firm's loss for the year widened to £7.5 million from £6.4 million, reflecting planned investment to develop and validate clinical application and commercial use of the Parsortix system. The company's installed base of Parsortix instruments grew to 200 from 145 in 2017. More than 49,000 blood separations have now taken place using the Parsortix system, up from about 30,000 at year-end 2017, the firm added. Angle had a cash balance of £7.6 million at the end of its fiscal year.

The company also noted that it acquired the assets of Axela for £3.6 million during its fiscal year, including that firm's Ziplex platform, which allows multiplex gene expression analysis of cancer cells. This complements the Parsortix system, Angle said, and the instruments will eventually be offered to customers as a full sample-to-answer solution.

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.