In a move that it anticipates will reduce the preclinical failure of drugs due to toxicity, Geron announced late last week that it is collaborating with CXR Biosciences and the Roslin Institute to develop and commercialize human embryonic stem cell-derived hepatocytes for use in drug metabolism and toxicity screens.

The company hopes to be offering ADME/Tox assays based on the hepatocytes by 2005, according to Geron CFO David Greenwood. Neither Geron nor CXR were able to disclose financial details of the agreement, which was announced on May 20.

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Thermo Fisher Scientific says it will no longer sell machines in China's Xinjiang region, according to the Wall Street Journal.

New Scientist reports that 20 percent of human and yeast proteins are uncharacterized.

The University of Zurich's Ruedi Aebersold and his colleagues analyzed a dozen HeLa cell lines to find differences in gene expression, protein levels, and more.

In Nature this week: protein-coding variants associated with body-fat distribution, and more.