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In Brief This Week: Cardea, HTG Molecular, Novigenix, Stilla Technologies

NEW YORK – Cardea announced this week that it has finalized its acquisition of Nanosens Innovations. The merger was first announced in September, along with the news that the companies planned to make their CRISPR-Chip-based Genome Sensor available through an early access program. Nanosens will continue to operate as a brand under the Cardea umbrella for the Genome Sensor and other tools the company plans to develop for the research market.

Immunotranscriptomics company Novigenix said this week that Helsana, the leading health insurance provider in Switzerland, has started coverage for Colox, the company's liquid biopsy test for the early detection of colorectal cancer. Individuals with the private outpatient supplementary insurance PRIMEO will be reimbursed for Colox. Colox is currently available in Switzerland through commercial partnerships with medical laboratories Unilabs and Dr Risch.

HTG Molecular Diagnostics announced this week that it will continue to abide by its existing obligations and complete all contracted work as part of a 2016 master assay development, commercialization, and manufacturing agreement with Qiagen subsidiary Qiagen Manchester. Tuscon, Arizona-based HTG said it will contract opportunities to develop new RNA companion diagnostics based on its EdgeSeq technology directly with BioPharma customers. The firm expects the opportunities to leverage the existing 2014 diagnostic development agreement with Illumina. If HTG's RNA companion diagnostic program leads to global commercialization, the firm will be able to freely partner with a number of third parties with respect to distribution and other commercialization activities.

Stilla Technologies said this week that it has established a new US subsidiary in Beverly, Massachusetts to enable direct commercial operations and distribution in the Americas, primarily for its Naica Crystal Digital PCR system. The new location will provide direct sales and support for American customers, including a demo lab and training center, and is being overseen by Ruth Szebries, the newly appointed general manager and vice president of commercial operations of the Americas.

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.

The Scan

Gene Co-Expression Database for Humans, Model Organisms Gets Update

GeneFriends has been updated to include gene and transcript co-expression networks based on additional RNA-seq data from human and mouse samples, a new paper in Nucleic Acids Research says.

New Study Investigates Genomics of Fanconi Anemia Repair Pathway in Cancer

A Rockefeller University team reports in Nature that FA repair deficiency leads to structural variants that can contribute to genomic instability.

Study Reveals Potential Sex-Specific Role for Noncoding RNA in Depression

A long, noncoding RNA called FEDORA appears to be a sex-specific regulator of major depressive disorder, affecting more women, researchers report in Science Advances.

New mRNA Vaccines Offer Hope for Fighting Malaria

A George Washington University-led team has developed mRNA vaccines for malaria that appear to provide protection in mice, as they report in NPJ Vaccines.