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Evotec OAI and Roche, BioImage, The Strategic Research Institute s Drug Discovery and Development Outsourcing Conference, and Discovery Partners

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Evotec, Roche Ink Drug Discovery Deal

Evotec OAI has entered into a "worldwide discovery chemistry agreement" with Roche, the companies announced on May 12.

This is the fourth chemistry alliance between the two companies since the first one was struck in 2001, when Evotec began supporting Roche at four sites in the design and synthesis of chemical compounds, which Roche added to its compound library for drug screening, the companies said.

In 2003, the companies said they expanded the partnership to encompass medicinal chemistry.

Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.


BioImage Screening Assay Demonstrates Tolerability, Efficacy of Anti-Cancer Compound

BioImage, a Copenhagen-based drug-discovery company, announced on May 12 that its patented Redistribution screening assay had produced positive efficacy and tolerability results for its lead anti-cancer compound, SCR 44001.

The company verified the potency and selectivity of the compound using its Redistribution assays, in which researchers track protein translocation by following GFP-tagged proteins with high-throughput imaging. According to the company, the approach allows researchers to look at how a drug changes the activity of certain signaling pathways without inhibiting the activity of signaling proteins.

BioImage said that the screening technology has identified several other potential compounds which, along with its lead compound, it plans to commercialize through partnerships with pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies. It will also outlicense the Redistribution technology, the company said.


Drug Discovery and Development Outsourcing Conference to be Held in July

The Strategic Research Institute said last week that its 8th annual conference and exposition on the outsourcing of pharmaceutical chemistry, drug discovery, and manufacturing is slated to take place July 14 and 15 in Philadelphia.

According to an official statement, the conference will bring together vendors and customers from the pharmaceutical, biotechnology, fine chemicals, custom synthesis, and other contract services industries. Topics include offshore versus domestic outsourcing, mostly for chemistry, and particularly focusing on India, China, and the US. Other topics include outsourcing of manufacturing and biology services such as ADMET, high-throughput screening, and assay development.

Additional information about the conference, including a preliminary agenda, can be found on SRI's website, http://www.srinstitute.com.


Discovery Partners Exercises Stock Over-Allotment Option

Discovery Partners International announced on May 14 that it has taken in $5.1 million from an over-allotment option in a public offering of its common stock.

DPI said that 1,083,300 over-allotment shares were purchased at the price of $5 per share, following on a public offering of the 7,220,000 shares that Celera Genomics recently sold. SG Cowen was the lead manager and Merriman Curhan Ford and Roth Capital Partners were co-managers for the offering.

Celera announced on May 12 that it sold 7,222,000 shares of Discovery Partners common stock in a public offering at a price of $5 per share. Celera Genomics took possession of these shares in November 2001 after it acquired Axys Pharmaceuticals, which had owned them since 2000, according to Celera spokesman Rob Bennett.

The Scan

Shape of Them All

According to BBC News, researchers have developed a protein structure database that includes much of the human proteome.

For Flu and More

The Wall Street Journal reports that several vaccine developers are working on mRNA-based vaccines for influenza.

To Boost Women

China's Ministry of Science and Technology aims to boost the number of female researchers through a new policy, reports the South China Morning Post.

Science Papers Describe Approach to Predict Chemotherapeutic Response, Role of Transcriptional Noise

In Science this week: neural network to predict chemotherapeutic response in cancer patients, and more.