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Mike Sjaastad, Jan Hughes, Keith Olson, Wolfgang Rencken, Gregory Calaman, Lee Herzenberg, Velocity11



Mike Sjaastad, former director of imaging for Molecular Devices, has departed the company to take a position with the Bio-X Program at Stanford University, CBA News learned this week.

Sjaastad joined Molecular Devices in 2002 when it acquired his former company Universal Imaging. Sjaastad told CBA News that he will be responsible for corporate relations at Bio-X, a program at Stanford that promotes and facilitates interdisciplinary work between biology, engineering, and medical faculty and students, as well as fosters corporate biotechnology partnerships.

Jan Hughes, vice president of marketing for Molecular Devices, will temporarily serve as Sjaastad's replacement while the company seeks to fill the position.

Keith Olson has been named vice president of product and market development at DiscoverX, Olson told CBA News this week.

Olson was previously director of strategic marketing for DiscoverX, which he joined in 2005. He previously served as director of product commercialization for Guava Technologies.

Definiens recently announced the appointment of Wolfgang Rencken as vice president of research and development. Rencken will be responsible for all worldwide R&D activities, including Definiens' Enterprise Image Intelligence platform, Cognition Network, Language Competence Center, Life Sciences Solutions, and Geospatial Intelligence Solutions.

Rencken previously was vice president of engineering for Siemens Medical Solutions' software components and workstations business unit. He holds a PhD in engineering science from the University of Oxford.

Definiens also said that Gregory Calaman has joined the company as vice president of customer services in North America.

Calaman was most recently employed by Pfizer, where he was responsible for large-scale IT program delivery, internal customer relationship management, and large-scale IT investment portfolio management.

Lee Herzenberg, emeritus professor of genetics at the Stanford University School of Medicine, has been awarded a 2006 Kyoto Prize for Advanced Technology. Herzenberg won the award for developing the fluorescence activated cell sorter, from which the modern-day flow cytometry industry sprung.

Kyoto Prizes are presented annually by the Inamori Foundation to individuals and groups worldwide who have contributed significantly to human progress in one of three areas: advanced technology, basic sciences, and arts and philosophy. This year's winners were announced June 9. The official award ceremony will take place Nov. 10 in Kyoto, Japan, where each winner will receive a medal and a cash gift of approximately $446,000.



Velocity11 this week announced a new configuration of its BioCel sample-processing platform to automate cell-based ELISA assays.

Velocity11 said that the new configuration was designed to dispense cells into microplates and perform a series of alternating incubations and reagent additions. The system also provides automated control of intermediate plate batches, cell medium removal, and absorbance detection, the company said.

The Scan

Pig Organ Transplants Considered

The Wall Street Journal reports that the US Food and Drug Administration may soon allow clinical trials that involve transplanting pig organs into humans.

'Poo-Bank' Proposal

Harvard Medical School researchers suggest people should bank stool samples when they are young to transplant when they later develop age-related diseases.

Spurred to Develop Again

New Scientist reports that researchers may have uncovered why about 60 percent of in vitro fertilization embryos stop developing.

Science Papers Examine Breast Milk Cell Populations, Cerebral Cortex Cellular Diversity, Micronesia Population History

In Science this week: unique cell populations found within breast milk, 100 transcriptionally distinct cell populations uncovered in the cerebral cortex, and more.