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Cepheid, DxS, Gene Logic, GE Healthcare, ABI, Affy, IBM, INMEGEN, Nyrion, Lexicon Genetics, DNAPrint, Biofrontera, Perlegen


Cepheid Licenses Scorpions Technology from DxS

Cepheid has licensed a probe technology for real-time PCR from DxS, the company said this week.

Under the agreement, Cepheid may use DxS' Scorpions technology for all markets except clinical diagnostics, wine production, and the detection of chemicals used in agriculture. Scorpions probes contain a PCR primer covalently linked to a fluorescent probe.

Cepheid plans to use the technology for food, agriculture, and environmental testing, starting with recreational water testing, combining it with its own SmartCycler and GeneXpert systems.

Gene Logic Q2 Revenues Up 8 Percent, Losses Down 41 Percent

Gene Logic this week reported increased revenues and declining losses for the second quarter of 2005.

Revenues for the quarter totaled $20.1 million, up 8 percent from $18.6 million during the same period a year ago. Of those, $14.2 million came from genomics and toxicogenomics services, a 12-percent increase, while revenues from nonclinical contract research services decreased 2 percent, to $5.8 million.

The company's research and development expenses for the quarter were $1.4 million, up from $400,000 during the year-ago period.

Gene Logic's net loss for the quarter was $2.6 million, or $.08 per share, down 41 percent from $4.4 million, or $.14 per share, during last year's second quarter. Part of this improvement came from $500,000 in savings compared to last year's quarter due to a new income tax treaty between the US and Japan that came into effect July 1, 2004.

As of June 30, Gene Logic had $69 million in cash and cash equivalents, and $29 million in marketable securities.

GE Healthcare Will Distribute Gene Logic's Expression-Analysis System ...

GE Healthcare will be the global distributor for Gene Logic's Sciantis online gene expression-analysis system, Gene Logic said this week.

Under the terms of the agreement, GE Healthcare will distribute Sciantis in 32 countries, and will be the exclusive distributor in Japan.

Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Gene Logic said that Sciantis was developed for use by researchers in academia, government, and research organizations. The browser-based gene-expression application, based on Gene Logic's gene-expression reference database, enables researchers to profile the expression of more than 6,000 human, rat, and mouse genes in normal and diseased tissue, Gene Logic said.

... and Plans to Co-Develop Biological Testing Technology for Water Industry

GE's Infrastructure, Water, and Process Technologies business and GenProbe will co-develop technology for detecting microorganisms in water, the companies said this week.

The firms will manufacture and commercialize nucleic acid-testing technology for detecting genetic sequences of microorganisms in selected water applications.

Additional terms were not disclosed.

ABI, Affy, IBM Partner With Mexican Genomic Medicine Institute

Mexico's Instituto Nacional de Medicina Genomica (INMEGEN) next week will unveil three new units formed in collaboration with Applied Biosystems, Affymetrix, and IBM, INMEGEN said this week.

At a ribbon-cutting ceremony to be held next week at the INMEGEN facilities in Mexico City, the institute will open its Applied Biosystems Sequencing and Genotyping Unit, which has partnered with ABI. The institute also will be introducing an Affymetrix Gene Expression Analysis unit, and an IBM Bioinformatics unit, INMEGEN said.

INMEGEN was established in 2004 as part of Mexico's National Institutes of Health to improve the health care of Mexican people by "focusing on the unique genetic makeup of its population, diseases, and conditions that specifically burden Mexican people," the institute said in a statement.

Applied Biosystems and INMEGEN will undertake the largest genotyping study undertaken in Latin America to date as part of their collaboration, INMEGEN said.

Additional details were not disclosed.

GE Healthcare Accredits Scotland's Nyrion to Offer CodeLink Array Services

Nyrion, a gene knockdown and expression-analysis shop, has been accredited by GE Healthcare to offer CodeLink microarrays as part of an expression-analysis service, officials from both companies confirmed this week.

Peter Estibeiro, managing director of the Edinburgh, Scotland-based start-up, said that Nyrion has been accredited to offer CodeLink as part of its service in the UKmarket, as well as to international customers.

Estibeiro spoke with GenomeWeb News at the BioScience 2005 conference, held here this week.

Penny Owen, a GE Healthcare marketing director, confirmed the deal had closed in recent weeks. An official announcement from both parties is pending, according to Estibeiro.

In addition to the CodeLink offering, Nyrion sells antisense and siRNA reagents on its AccessArray 4000 system, as well as other reagents, according to the company's commercial literature.

Texas to Spend $50M on New Institute for Genomic Medicine

The state of Texas has committed $50 million from the Texas Enterprise Fund to establish the Texas Institute for Genomic Medicine, which will offer a mouse stem cell library to researchers, Lexicon Genetics said last week.

Lexicon will receive $35 million of the award to create a library of 350,000 knockout mouse embryonic stem cell lines. The remaining $15 million will go to the Texas A&M University System for creating facilities and infrastructure to house the library.

Founding members of the non-profit institute are Texas A&M University, the Texas A&M University System Health Science Center, and Lexicon Genetics, but the institute encourages participation by all Texas academic, medical, and commercial entities. The institute will focus on diabetes and obesity research as well as infectious diseases and cancer and will offer its mouse stem cell library to researchers worldwide. It will be located at the Texas A&M System Health Science Center's Institute of Biosciences and Technology in Houston and at Texas A&M University in Houston.

GE Healthcare Revenues Increase 12 Percent in Q2

GE Healthcare's revenues during the second quarter of 2005 increased 12 percent year over year, to $3.8 billion, GE reported last week.

The business unit, which incorporated Amersham Biosciences in April of last year, contributed 9 percent to GE's overall quarterly revenues of $41.6 billion, similar to the same period in 2004. GE's total revenues were up 13 percent over last year's $36.8 billion during the second quarter.

Orders for the healthcare business unit grew 11 percent over the second quarter of 2004, to $3.9 billion, $2.5 billion of which came from equipment orders.

Healthcare had $672 million in profits, up 15 percent from $584 million during the same period last year.

GE's total earnings amounted to $4.6 billion, up 24 percent from $3.8 billion in the second quarter of last year. Earnings per share were $.44, up 22 percent over last year's $.36 during the same period.

As of June 30, GE had $146 billion in cash and marketable securities.

DNAPrint Buys 18 Percent of Biofrontera for $1.8M, Expands Drug Pipeline

DNAPrint Genomics said last week that it had purchased an 18-percent share of Leverkusen, Germany-based Biofrontera for €1.5 million ($1.8 million), a prelude to the development of a new pharmaceutical pipeline for DNAPrint.

DNAPrint said it will add two of Biofrontera's Phase II drugs to its stable for chronic uriticaria and actinic keratosis, called BF-Derm1 and 5-aminolevulonic acid, respectively, the company said. DNAPrint will also add "a series" of drugs that are in pre-clinical development, including a prophylactic migraine treatment, it said.

"The key goal of our pharmaceutical research is the development of test/drug combinations for helping to ensure efficacy with compatible patients," said Hector Gomez, DNAPrint's chief medical officer.

"Over the next several months we plan to expand our relationship with Biofrontera, especially in the drug development arena, and we plan to take advantage of each others' locations to help promote our respective products and services in each others' markets," said Richard Gabriel, president and CEO of DNAPrint.

Gabriel and Gomez will sit on the Biofrontera board of directors in connection with the transaction, the company said.

Perlegen, Academic Consortium to Study SNPs Linked to Bipolar Disorder

Perlegen Sciences and the Pritzker Neuropsychiatric Disorders Research Consortium will jointly study genetic variations associated with bipolar disorder, the Mountain View, Calif.-based company said last week.

The partners plan to genotype SNPs in patients and controls and validate the results in a separate study. PNDRC will also examine how genetic variations correlate with changes in gene expression.

DNA samples will come from projects that participated in the National Institute of Mental Health Bipolar Disorder Genetics Initiative, and controls from the NIMH Molecular Genetics of Schizophrenia Initiative.

PNDRC is a collaboration between several academic groups, including the University of Michigan, Stanford University, the University of California at Irvine, the University of California at Davis, and Cornell University.

Filed under

The Scan

Study Links Genetic Risk for ADHD With Alzheimer's Disease

A higher polygenic risk score for attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder is also linked to cognitive decline and Alzheimer's disease, a new study in Molecular Psychiatry finds.

Study Offers Insights Into Role of Structural Variants in Cancer

A new study in Nature using cell lines shows that structural variants can enable oncogene activation.

Computer Model Uses Genetics, Health Data to Predict Mental Disorders

A new model in JAMA Psychiatry finds combining genetic and health record data can predict a mental disorder diagnosis before one is made clinically.

Study Tracks Off-Target Gene Edits Linked to Epigenetic Features

Using machine learning, researchers characterize in BMC Genomics the potential off-target effects of 19 computed or experimentally determined epigenetic features during CRISPR-Cas9 editing.