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Although RNAi had long been a key aspect of Opko's technology portfolio, the failure of its AMD drug in phase III and a series of recent investments in other technologies raises questions about its interest in siRNA drugs.

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Phillip Sharp, Jamie Freedman

According to an Opko filing with the US Securities and Exchange Commission, it settled the litigation without admitting wrongdoing in order to "avoid the expense and uncertainty of litigation."

Unlike other biotechs facing a cash crunch, Opko's chief executive and biggest investor is a billionaire who has used his wealth before to keep the company afloat.

Although the future of the drug is unclear, an Opko executive said that the firm remains committed to its portfolio of VEGF-targeting siRNAs.

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Alnylam Pharmaceuticals, Opko Health, Australian Patent Office

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Michael Reich

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Bloomberg reports that the DNA-for-cash deal reported in Kentucky might be a more widespread scam.

St. Jude Children's Research Hospital scientists have treated infants with X-linked severe combined immunodeficiency using gene therapy in an early phase study.

St. Louis Public Radio reports that some African Americans are turning to DNA ancestry testing to help guide genealogical searches.

In Nature this week: a genomic analysis of the snailfish Pseudoliparis swirei, ancient DNA analysis gives insight into the introduction of farming to England, and more.