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Cyntellect, University of Florida, MDS Analytical Technologies, Nikon Instruments, ChromoDynamics

Cyntellect to Collaborate with U of Florida on Cancer Stem Cells
Cyntellect said this week that it will collaborate with the University of Florida Interdisciplinary Center for Biotechnology Research on the purification and analysis of cancer stem cells.
The partners will use Cyntellect’s LEAP system to purify the stem cells and their progeny “without disturbing them from their growing environment,” said Cyntellect. The San Diego-based firm will receive certain payments and commercial rights to discoveries under the collaboration. Further details were not provided.
The collaboration will seek to “gain a better understanding of the molecular machinery, signaling pathways, and markers associated with rare cells, such as CSCs,” said Cyntellect CEO Fred Koller in a statement. “This information will be paramount to innovating novel drug development strategies and developing new cutting-edge diagnostics for crippling diseases, such as cancer.”
Cyntellect said that the alliance with the University of Florida is the second “major” LEAP collaboration this year. It expects further collaborations in 2009 aimed at leveraging cell manipulation for discovering new drugs and cellular therapies and developing new cell-based diagnostics.

MDS Delivers First CellKey 384 HT, Label-Free Instruments
MDS Analytical Technologies this week announced the delivery of the first three CellKey 384 Systems to undisclosed customers. Additional systems are scheduled to be delivered before the close of the calendar year, the company said.
The CellKey 384 System is a high-throughput, 384-well instrument that uses the label-free, cellular measurement technology of the original 96-well CellKey System. The manufacturer said that its new system’s four-fold increase in throughput enables researchers to accelerate the screening of endogenous targets and reduce the cost per well by using fewer cells and reagents.

Nikon, ChromoDynamics Reach Reseller Agreement
Nikon Instruments and ChromoDynamics announced this week a reseller agreement enabling Nikon to deliver ChromoDynamics' new HSi-300 system widefield hyperspectral imaging technology.

Paired with Nikon's NIS-Elements software platform, the HSi-300 will allow easier, more accurate morphological and molecular component differentiation for biological research, the companies said. Techniques utilizing fluorescence in situ hybridization and preparations using quantum dots can be rapidly separated and quantified without the use of motorized emission-side filter wheels.

The Scan

Pfizer-BioNTech Seek Full Vaccine Approval

According to the New York Times, Pfizer and BioNTech are seeking full US Food and Drug Administration approval for their SARS-CoV-2 vaccine.

Viral Integration Study Critiqued

Science writes that a paper reporting that SARS-CoV-2 can occasionally integrate into the host genome is drawing criticism.

Giraffe Species Debate

The Scientist reports that a new analysis aiming to end the discussion of how many giraffe species there are has only continued it.

Science Papers Examine Factors Shaping SARS-CoV-2 Spread, Give Insight Into Bacterial Evolution

In Science this week: genomic analysis points to role of human behavior in SARS-CoV-2 spread, and more.