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Myriad

During Myriad's investor day last week, officials disclosed that the firm is working with pharmaceutical companies to develop companion diagnostics for PARP inhibitors and PTEN inhibitors.

According to CEO Peter Meldrum, Myriad’s strong IP position on the BRACAnalysis test and a large internal database of BRCA mutations ensure that "regardless of the outcome of this particular lawsuit, it will not have a material adverse effect on the company … or on the future revenues of our products."

"For the first time, physicians now have a direct molecular measure of a prostate tumor's capacity to divide and grow by examining the mechanics of growth at the molecular level," Myriad said in a statement announcing the launch of Prolaris, a 46-gene prognostic test that quantitatively determines the risk of prostate cancer recurrence in patients who have undergone a prostatectomy.

Some legal experts believe that US District Court Judge Sweet may wait and see how the Supreme Court handles the method claims in Bilski v. Kappos before ruling on the ACLU case.

Most DTC genomic service providers use either custom or catalog chips made by the two West Coast vendors, though some vow to integrate next-gen sequencing into their services when cost and reliability issues improve.

An AHRQ official provided updates on the agency's ongoing activities in the personalized medicine field, including the development of a BRCA testing decision-support tool; a draft report on frameworks for gauging genetic testing quality; and a randomized-controlled trial on pharmacogenomics warfarin dosing that is unlikely to change the standard of care.

Responding to an HHS committee's request for comment on its educational and marketing practices, Myriad maintained that urging doctors to conduct genetic counseling in house instead of referring patients to a genetic counselor is legally sound, follows professional medical societies' standards, and accommodates the shortage of cancer genetics professionals.

Myraid's sales for the quarter jumped sharply, with the company citing its sales force expansion as a primary driver of revenue gains.

The ACLU, on behalf of plaintiffs in its anti-gene patenting case, filed a counterstatement on Jan. 20 against defendant Myriad Genetics' claims that isolated DNA molecules are patentable chemical compounds. In addition, several genetics experts have filed statements challenging many of Myriad's scientific claims.

In what could be a "far reaching" case, a judge hears arguments about humanity and biotechnology today but is not ready to rule.

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Nature News reports that genomics is being applied to trace and try to prevent additional COVID-19 waves.

Rady's Children Hospital and San Diego County are teaming up to test pediatric patients and their families for COVID-19 to gauge the spread of the virus locally, according to the San Diego Union-Tribune.

Wildlife managers aim to boost the genetic diversity of Mexican gray wolves by placing captive-born foster pups into packs with similarly aged wild pups, the Mercury News reports.

In Science this week: Genetic Probability tool identifies likely diagnoses in 45 percent of inflammatory arthritis cases, and more.