CytRx

Galena Biopharma late last month completed its spinout of RNAi drugs subsidiary RXi Pharmaceuticals, ending a year-long saga that included an acquisition, litigation, and a management shakeup that included the loss of RXi's CSO.

CytRx said it sold the shares for $7 million.

Although the suit was first filed last summer, the courtroom showdown had been brewing for years.

The change follows a number of false starts RXi has made in regard to its pipeline, as well as the firm’s failure to meet previously stated partnering goals. But RXi is not alone in this respect, and management changeups in troubled times have been par for the course among RNAi drug shops.

The USPTO said that since the co-assignees of the Tuschl-I IP “have divergent interests, no one side can reasonably expect or be permitted to control the prosecution of [the] patent application [at issue] to the exclusion of the others.”

The court determined that Alnylam and Max Planck have “not shown a substantial likelihood of success” on the merits of their case.

While most companies working in the RNAi drugs field have been able to secure the money needed to maintain operations, a number of players in the space have bowed out under unfavorable circumstances.

In doing so, the Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and the University of Massachusetts have all asked that the court reject Alnylam Pharmaceuticals and Max Planck's request for an order blocking any Tuschl-I patent issuance.

Technology Review reports that researchers in the US have used CRISPR to modify a number of human embryos.

By introducing genes from butterfly peas and Canterbury bells, researchers in Japan have developed a blue chrysanthemum, according to NPR.

Plant researchers plan to sequence some 10,000 samples that represent the major plant clades, ScienceInsider reports.

In Nature this week: a Danish reference genome, and more.