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Paired Ends: May 3, 2011


Theo Melas Kyriazi has resigned from Helicos' board of directors. He is an operating executive with SFW Capital Partners. Previously, he worked for 20 years at Thermo Electron (now Thermo Fisher Scientific), most recently as its chief financial officer. He also served as treasurer, vice president of corporate strategy, and CEO of Thermo Spectra. He holds a BA and an MBA from Harvard University.

Life Technologies has named Ora Hirsch Pescovitz to its board of directors. She will replace Ann Reynolds, who is retiring after serving on the board for six years. Pescovitz is the executive vice president of medical affairs and health system chief executive officer at the University of Michigan. Previously, she was the executive associate dean for research affairs at Indiana University School Medicine, the president and CEO of Riley Hospital for Children in Indianapolis, and interim vice president for research administration at Indiana University.

Tal Raz
has become vice president of molecular biology at GnuBio. Previously, she headed RNA assay development at Helicos BioSciences. She has also worked as a research fellow for Children's Hospital Boston and in George Daley's lab at the Whitehead Institute. She holds an MS in epidemiology from the University of California, Los Angeles, and a PhD in genetics from the Technion Israel Institute of Technology.

Ram Laxman has been hired as the vice president of sales and sales operations in Asia at Pacific Biosciences. He joins PacBio after seven years at Illumina, most recently managing its Asian distributor organization across Australia, Taiwan, Korea, Thailand, Malaysia, Philippines, Indonesia, Vietnam, India, and Pakistan. Previously, he spent six years as an application scientist at Illumina and Research Instruments. Laxman holds a PhD in molecular biology from the National University of Singapore's School of Medicine.

Peter Fromen, formerly senior director of investor relations at Illumina, now has a new role as senior director of applications marketing. He will be transitioning investor relations responsibility over the next quarter to Kevin White, who was recently hired as senior director of investor relations. White has spent the last 10 years in the investment community as a buy-side analyst.

Former Life Technologies executive Brian Pollok has been appointed president of biological resource and standards organization ATCC. Pollok was previously the chief scientific officer and head of global research and development at Life Tech. Additionally, he served as vice president of R&D for Invitrogen's discovery sciences group; senior vice president of research and co-founder of Ansata Therapeutics; vice president of discovery research at Aurora Biosciences; senior research investigator for Pfizer; and assistant professor of microbiology and immunology at Wake Forest University. Pollok received his BA in biology and chemistry from the University of Virginia and his PhD from the University of Alabama, Birmingham.

The Scan

Booster Push

New data shows a decline in SARS-CoV-2 vaccine efficacy over time, which the New York Times says Pfizer is using to argue its case for a booster, even as the lower efficacy remains high.

With Help from Mr. Fluffington, PurrhD

Cats could make good study animals for genetic research, the University of Missouri's Leslie Lyons tells the Atlantic.

Man Charged With Threatening to Harm Fauci, Collins

The Hill reports that Thomas Patrick Connally, Jr., was charged with making threats against federal officials.

Nature Papers Present Approach to Find Natural Products, Method to ID Cancer Driver Mutations, More

In Nature this week: combination of cryogenic electron microscopy with genome mining helps uncover natural products, driver mutations in cancer, and more.