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In Brief This Week: Thermo Fisher Scientific; Corning; Life Technologies; Affymetrix; Saladax; Epistem; MLSC

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – Thermo Fisher Scientific this week said that its board of directors has declared a quarterly cash dividend of $.13 per share. It's payable on Oct. 15, to shareholders of record as of Sept. 17.


Corning has opened a new life sciences lab in Palo Alto, Calif., in its existing Corning West Technology Center. The lab will provide customers and researchers with onsite expertise in using the firm's technologies for cell-based, biochemical, and molecular biology assays.


JP Morgan this week downgraded the stocks of Life Technologies and Affymetrix. It downgraded Life Tech to Neutral from Overweight and lowered its share price target to $46 from $52. It lowered Affy's stock to Underweight from Neutral.


Saladax Biomedical has achieved CE Mark registration for its MyPaclitaxel and MyDocetaxel therapeutic dose management assays. The tests, which can now be commercialized in Europe, provide patient-specific chemotherapy dose optimization.


Epistem has received the CE-IVD Mark for its molecular diagnostic test for tuberculosis. The test runs on the firm's point-of-care GeneDrive device.


The Massachusetts Life Sciences Center has launched its 2012-2013 Accelerator Loan Program, which provides working capital for early-stage life sciences companies. The program loans up to $1 million to each company. Since its launch in 2009, the program has awarded $11.2 million in loans to 20 companies. Among the firms that have received funding is Good Start Genetics, which is using next-generation sequencing technology to develop tests for all American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists and American College of Medical Genetics and Genomics recommended disorders.


A new open-access journal called Microbiome has been launched by BioMed Central. The new journal, which focuses on microbiome research, is edited by Jacques Ravel, from the University of Maryland School of Medicine's Institute for Genome Sciences, and Eric Wommack, from the University of Delaware.


In Brief This Week is a Friday column containing news items that our readers may have missed during the week.

The Scan

Should've Been Spotted Sooner

Scientists tell the Guardian that SARS-CoV-2 testing issues at a UK lab should have been noticed earlier.

For Martian Fuel

Researchers have outlined a plan to produce rocket fuel on Mars that uses a combination of sunlight, carbon dioxide, frozen water, cyanobacteria, and engineered E. coli, according to Gizmodo.

To Boost Rapid Testing

The Washington Post writes that new US programs aim to boost the availability of rapid at-home SARS-CoV-2 tests.

PNAS Papers on Strawberry Evolution, Cell Cycle Regulators, False-Positive Triplex Gene Editing

In PNAS this week: strawberry pan-genome, cell cycle-related roles for MDM2 and MDMX, and more.