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Paired Ends: Feb 16, 2010


Tim Harkins joined Life Technologies as director of R&D for SOLiD collaborations last week. He comes to Life Tech from Roche Applied Science North America, where he was director of marketing for sequencing, responsible for the company's 454 Life Sciences Genome Sequencer platform.

Steve Lombardi has resigned as president and director of Helicos BioSciences, effective Feb. 11, according to a company filing with the US Securities and Exchange Commission last week. Ron Lowy, Helicos' CEO, has also taken on the role of president.

Lombardi joined Helicos in 2006 as senior vice president of sales and marketing and became president and COO in 2007. From August until December 2008, he served as the company's CEO. Prior to Helicos, he was a senior vice president at Affymetrix, and before that, he held various positions at Applied Biosystems, including vice president of the firm's sequencing and genetic analysis business unit. He has a degree in biology from Merrimack College.

Agilent Technologies has appointed Robert Schueren as vice president and general manager for genomics. He will be responsible for all genomics operations, including microarrays, qPCR, and life science reagents. Most recently, he was global head of companion diagnostics, clinical biomarker, and sample operations at Genentech/Roche.

Ion Torrent Systems has disclosed on its website additional members of its management team, scientific advisory board, and business advisory board:

Jamie Kole joined the company in December 2009 as vice president of finance and administration. Previously, she was chief financial officer and vice president of operations at iPierian, a stem cell therapeutics company. Before that, she was vice president of finance at Affymetrix, where she acted as chief financial officer from December 2006 to June 2007. Kole holds an MBA from Santa Clara University and a BS in applied mathematics from the Rochester Institute of Technology.

Maneesh Jain joined Ion Torrent in May 2009 as vice president of marketing and business development. Previously, he co-founded Auriphex, a cell sorting and analysis company, and served as the firm's interim CEO. Prior to that, he was senior director of global marketing at Affymetrix. He joined Affymetrix following its acquisition of ParAllele BioScience, a company he co-founded in 2001 with researchers from Stanford University. Before that, he worked at the Stanford Genome Technology Center, where he developed new DNA sequencing approaches and co-invented the molecular inversion probe technology. Jain holds a PhD from Stanford University and a BS from Caltech.

Stephen Macevicz is Ion Torrent's vice president for intellectual property. Previously, he held positions at Aclara BioSciences; GeneProt; Lynx Therapeutics, where he was vice president of intellectual property; and Applied Biosystems, where he was chief patent counsel.

Macevicz holds a JD degree and a PhD in biophysics from the University of California, Berkeley, and an AB in mathematics from San Diego State University.

James Bustillo joined Ion Torrent in 2007 as vice president of sensor technology. Prior to that, he was associate director of the Molecular Foundry, a nanotechnology science research center at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. He is also a former scientific advisor to CuraGen. Bustillo holds a master's degree of engineering in applied solid-state physics from Cornell University and a BS in engineering physics from Lehigh University.

Thomas Roth, Ion Torrent's vice president for engineering, joined the company in 2008. Prior to that, he was director of instrumentation engineering and program manager at 454 Life Sciences, now part of Roche. Prior to that, he was senior program manager of Home Diagnostics. Roth holds a BSEE from George Washington University.

Additional members of Ion Torrent's scientific advisory board include George Church, Ron Davis, and Abbas El Gamal.

Church is a professor of genetics at Harvard Medical School and director of the Center for Computational Genetics. He is also an advisor to numerous companies, including Complete Genomics, 23andme, Knome, and Halcyon Molecular, and the principal investigator of the Personal Genome Project.

Davis is the director of the Stanford Genome Technology Center and professor of biochemistry and genetics at Stanford University School of Medicine. He is also a co-founder of ParAllele BioScence. He holds a PhD in chemistry from Caltech and a BS in chemistry, physics, mathematics, and botany from Eastern Illinois University.

El Gamal is a professor of the department of electrical engineering and the director of the information systems laboratory at Stanford University. He co-founded Silicon Architects, now part of Synopsys. He was also director of LSI Logic Research Lab, as well as chief scientist and a co-founder of Actel. El Gamal holds a PhD in electrical engineering and an MS in statistics from Stanford, and a BS in electrical engineering from Cairo University.

Dan Seligson and Sass Somekh are additional members of Ion Torrent's business advisory board.

Seligson is COO of GlobalMotion and has been a member of the Band of Angels, a group of Silicon Valley entrepreneurs and professionals who invest in early stage companies, since 2004. Previously, he worked in lithography process development and manufacturing engineering at Intel. He holds physics degrees from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and from the University of California, Berkeley.

Somekh is the former president and current chair of the technical advisory board of Novellus Systems. Prior to that, he was executive vice president and a board member at Applied Materials. He holds a PhD in electrical engineering from Caltech.

The Scan

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Researchers in BMC Genomics found 10 differentially expressed proteins or metabolites that marked atrial fibrillation with heart failure cases.

Study Points to Synonymous Mutation Effects on E. Coli Enzyme Activity

Researchers in Nature Chemistry saw signs of enzyme activity shifts in the presence of synonymous mutations in a multiscale modeling analysis of three Escherichia coli genes.

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With data for nearly 9,200 pregnant individuals, researchers in Genetics in Medicine demonstrate the feasibility of their carrier screening and reflex single-gene non-invasive prenatal screening approach.

Germline-Targeting HIV Vaccine Shows Promise in Phase I Trial

A National Institutes of Health-led team reports in Science that a broadly neutralizing antibody HIV vaccine induced bnAb precursors in 97 percent of those given the vaccine.