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In Brief This Week: Agendia; Gen-Probe, Neogen; Synthetic Biology Industry Association; Biodesign Institute, Intel

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – Agendia this week said that Palmetto GBA, California's Part B Medicare administrator, has established coding guidelines for the firm's MammaPrint test. It said patients in the US can now submit claims for the MammaPrint test directly to Palmetto GBA in California where the test results are analyzed.

Gen-Probe has sold its BioKits food safety business to Neogen for an undisclosed sum. Gen-Probe acquired the BioKits business through its purchase earlier this year of Tepnel, but the business did not fit in with its long-term strategic plan. The BioKits line includes more than 50 test kits for food allergens, meat and fish speciation, and plant genomics. It brought in revenues of around $3 million in 2009, said Neogen.

The Synthetic Biology Industry Association was launched last week in Cambridge, Mass., and includes representatives of febit, Geneart, Ginkgo bioWorks, Biosearch Technologies, and Sutro Biopharma. The association will serve as a trade group for firms and individuals involved in gene synthesis, pharmaceutical development, energy development, and pollution control.

Arizona State University's Biodesign Institute will use $2.3 million worth of donated equipment from Intel to develop peptide chips for disease diagnosis. The institute said that the home-based tests would enable detection of disease at its earlier stage, even before symptoms are present.

The Scan

Myotonic Dystrophy Repeat Detected in Family Genome Sequencing Analysis

While sequencing individuals from a multi-generation family, researchers identified a myotonic dystrophy type 2-related short tandem repeat in the European Journal of Human Genetics.

TB Resistance Insights Gleaned From Genome Sequence, Antimicrobial Response Assays

Researchers in PLOS Biology explore M. tuberculosis resistance with a combination of sequencing and assays looking at the minimum inhibitory concentrations of 13 drugs.

Mendelian Disease Genes Prioritized Using Tissue-Specific Expression Clues

Mendelian gene candidates could be flagged for further functional analyses based on tissue-specific transcriptome and proteome profiles, a new Journal of Human Genetics paper says.

Single-Cell Sequencing Points to Embryo Mosaicism

Mosaicism may affect preimplantation genetic tests for aneuploidy, a single-cell sequencing-based analysis of almost three dozen embryos in PLOS Genetics finds.