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Evotec, ProPharma, TNO, Mitsubishi, Keck


Evotec Folds ProPharma Subsidiary into Services Division

Evotec said last week that ProPharma Limited, Evotec's Glasgow, Scotland-based formulation subsidiary, is now conducting its business under the Evotec brand.

ProPharma will be integrated into the Evotec Services Division over the coming months, Evotec said in a statement.

Evotec has been the majority shareholder in ProPharma since it was formed as a spin-out enterprise from the University of Strathclyde in Glasgow in 2000.

Evotec said the integration will combine its experience in pharmaceutical ingredient manufacture with ProPharma's expertise in pharmaceutical formulation development, further broadening Evotec's range of drug discovery services.

TNO, Mitsubishi Pharma Enter siRNA Target Validation Pact

Dutch biotech TNO and Mitsubishi Pharma of Japan have entered into a technology development collaboration for siRNA-based target validation studies, the companies said last week.

Under the terms of the agreement, TNO will use its siRNA knockdown technology and disease models to further characterize a set of Mitsubishi's proprietary disease targets.

Financial terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

Keck Awarded $4.88M Grant to 'Rewire' Yeast

The Keck Graduate Institute of Applied Life Sciences has been awarded a 5-year, $4.88 million grant from the National Science Foundation to investigate cellular function and determine whether or not cells can be re-engineered, KGI said last week.

KGI researchers will be using the funding — made available through the NSF's Frontiers in Integrative Biological Research program — to "rewire" the molecular machinery of S. cerevisiae yeast, predict the reaction of the cellular machinery to the rewiring, and compare it with direct experiments.

KGI said it believes that if functional modules in the cell can be rewired, it may be possible to "reengineer" cells for complex functions.

The Scan

Genetic Risk Factors for Hypertension Can Help Identify Those at Risk for Cardiovascular Disease

Genetically predicted high blood pressure risk is also associated with increased cardiovascular disease risk, a new JAMA Cardiology study says.

Circulating Tumor DNA Linked to Post-Treatment Relapse in Breast Cancer

Post-treatment detection of circulating tumor DNA may identify breast cancer patients who are more likely to relapse, a new JCO Precision Oncology study finds.

Genetics Influence Level of Depression Tied to Trauma Exposure, Study Finds

Researchers examine the interplay of trauma, genetics, and major depressive disorder in JAMA Psychiatry.

UCLA Team Reports Cost-Effective Liquid Biopsy Approach for Cancer Detection

The researchers report in Nature Communications that their liquid biopsy approach has high specificity in detecting all- and early-stage cancers.