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In Brief This Week: ERS Genomics, Lunit, Agilent, Thermo Fisher, Congenica, Oxford BioDynamics, More

NEW YORK – ERS Genomics this week said it has signed a nonexclusive licensing agreement for CRISPR-Cas9 patents with Italian contract research organization IRBM. Financial and other details were not disclosed. ERS Genomics offers licensing to technology invented by CRISPR pioneer Emmanuelle Charpentier. 

South Korean cancer diagnostics company Lunit said this week that it has completed its acquisition of New Zealand-based breast cancer screening software firm Volpara Health Technologies. Lunit will integrate Volpara's breast health platform with its own AI-based technologies for breast cancer detection. Additionally, the deal will provide Lunit entry into the US market. In December, the company said it planned to acquire Volpara for A$1.15 (US$.77) per share in a deal valued at A$292 million. 

Agilent Technologies said this week that its board of directors has approved a quarterly dividend of $.24 per share of its common stock, payable on July 24 to shareholders of record as of July 2. 

Thermo Fisher Scientific said this week that its board of directors has authorized a quarterly cash dividend of $.39 per common share, payable on July 15 to shareholders of record as of June 14. 

UK genomic data analysis firm Congenica said this week that it has been selected for the third phase of a contract under the Integrated and Standardized NGS Workflows for Personalized Therapy (Instand-NGS4P) project to develop standardized next-generation sequencing workflows in oncology. The project is funded in part by the European Union's Horizon 2020 program. Under the contract, Congenica will install and test its automated data analysis and reporting platform, which enables evidence-based interpretation of NGS data with a focus on actionable insights for fast treatment decisions, at various sites across Europe over the next 12 months. 

Oxford BioDynamics said this week that it has signed an agreement with the London Clinic, a private hospital in the UK, to provide patients at the clinic with access to OBD's EpiSwitch PSE (Prostate Screening) and EpiSwitch CiRT (Checkpoint inhibitor Response Test) blood tests. EpiSwitch PSE is a screening test for prostate cancer that has better accuracy than a standard PSA tests, according to the Oxford, UK-based firm. EpiSwitch CiRT identifies patients who will respond to immune checkpoint inhibitor therapy to support first-line treatment planning and to identify ICI candidates among patients where other options have been exhausted. 

MGI Tech subsidiary Complete Genomics said this week that it has opened a new Customer Experience Center (CEC) in the greater Boston region. Located in Framingham, Massachusetts, the new center is expected to enable faster service and support to East Coast customers, the company said. Customers will be able to experience Complete Genomics' DNBSeq workflows, including next-generation sequencing platforms, sample prep automation systems, and bioinformatics products. 

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.