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GeneNews' Q3 Revenues Fall 74 Percent; PGx, MDx Services Launched

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – GeneNews' third-quarter revenues plummeted 74 percent year over year, the Canadian developer of blood-based biomarker tests reported after the close of the market on Thursday.

In a document filed with Canadian regulators, the company said that revenues in the quarter totaled C$43,999 (US$44,241), down from C$166,515 a year ago as non-refundable licensing revenues dropped to zero from C$162,619 a year ago.

Sales of the ColonSentry test rose to C$8,210 from C$3,896 a year ago, and GeneNews posted C$35,789 in milestone revenues, up from zero a year ago, due to an additional payment from an Asian biomedical consortium.

The firm's net loss for the quarter increased to C$997,835, or C$.01 per share, from a net loss of C$826,543, or C$.01 per share, a year ago. The increase, GeneNews said in a statement, was due mostly to the impact of the International Financing Reporting Standards classification of foreign exchange gains related to its Malaysian subsidiary.

Its R&D spending during the quarter retreated 18 percent to C$406,813 from C$495,400 during the third quarter of 2010, "due to the stage of discovery activity undertaken in the respective quarters by the company's Malaysian subsidiary for the liver and hepatitis program," it said. In 2010 GeneNews received the first tranche of funding in relation to the program, while in 2011 it was completing the initial analysis of patient data from it.

The firm's SG&A costs increased 36 percent year over year to C$485,788 from C$356,150.

GeneNews finished the quarter with C$673,951 in cash and cash equivalents. It also had C$2.3 million in short-term investments.

Separately, the company announced the launch of its pharmacogenomic and companion diagnostic BloodRNA services for drug development and personalized health management applications. Called SentinelGx, the service provides "complete whole blood transcriptome analysis for RNA expression profiling of inflammatory pathways, immune system response, and cell signaling" based on GeneNews' Sentinel Principle technology, which identifies biomarkers in blood.

The firm also announced the appointment of Karl Wassmann as executive vice president of US corporate development to head SentinelGx. Wassmann was most recently president and CEO of Source MDx, which went out of business earlier this year.

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