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Integrated DNA Technologies, NextGen Sciences, GlaxoSmithKline, Stratagene, UK Medical Research Council, Perlegen Life Sciences, Mayo Clinic, Sumitomo


Integrated DNA Technologies Will Sell ddRNAi Oligos from Promega

Integrated DNA Technologies has licensed DNA-directed RNA-interference technology from Promega, the company said last week.

Terms of the non-exclusive agreement call for IDT to make and sell oligos for use in ddRNAi. The company, based in Coralville, Iowa, is the first oligonucleotide manufacturer in the US to obtain a ddRNAi license from Promega.

Promega, in turn, holds an exclusive license from Benitec that allows it to sell custom ddRNAi-related oligos and related services. The technology is protected in the United States by US Patent No. 6,573,099.

NextGen Sciences Sells Protein Expression System to GSK

NextGen Sciences has sold one of its protein expression instruments to GlaxoSmithKline in the UK, the company said last week.

GSK will use NextGen’s Expressionfactory instrument, which automates protein expression and purification, in its gene-expression and protein-biochemistry department.

Huntingdon, UK-based NextGen Sciences said this is the first system it has sold in the UK.

Stratagene Reports Increased Revenues, Income in Q1 for Stand-alone Operations

Stratagene reported increased revenues and earnings for its stand-alone operations for the first quarter of 2004. The results do not include those of Hycor Biomedical, which Stratagene acquired last week.

The earnings also do not include results from BioCrest Holdings “due to common control and management.” Stratagene acquired the assets of BioCrest June 2.

Revenues for the first quarter increased to $19.4 million from $16.9 million during the same quarter last year. R&D spending, however, fell to $2.5 million from $2.8 million during the year-ago period.

Consequently, net income climbed to $2.1 million from $1.3 million during the same quarter in 2003.

As of March 31, Stratagene had $3.1 million in cash and cash equivalents.

UK’s MRC Gene Service Offers WGA

The UK Medical Research Council’s geneservice has launched a whole genome amplification service.

The service, designed for genome researchers that have minute quantities of DNA and degraded samples, will be able to provide these researchers with enough DNA for multiple projects or larger-scale projects, the MRC said.

After comparing various whole-genome amplification technologies, the service chose Molecular Staging’s REPLI-g technology because the MSI system “proved superior on our samples to the other systems tested and provides a very effective QC for the end product,” said Cheng-Eng Ang, MRC DNA Bank Network Manager. Ang will be managing the service.

MRC geneservice, based in Cambridge, UK, is a non-for profit contract research organization and biological resource center, and is a division of the MRC Rosalind Franklin Center for Genomics Research.

Perlegen and Mayo Awarded $2.8M Grant for Parkinson’s Research

Perlegen Life Sciences and the Mayo Clinic said last Friday that their collaboration on a whole-genome association study of Parkinson’s disease has been awarded a grant worth up to $2.8 million by the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research.

Under the partnership, the collaborators are combining Perlegen’s high-throughput genotyping technology and genetic variation know-how with the Mayo Clinic’s DNA samples from Parkinson’s disease patients in order to look for SNPs possibly associated with the disorder.

The effort is expected to yield 200 million genotypes, which will be validated in a separate population of Mayo Clinic DNA samples so that Parkinson’s disease SNPs can be identified.

Sumitomo Completes Acquisition of Life Sciences VC Oxford Finance

Sumitomo has completed its acquisition of Oxford Finance, which has backed several genomics companies.

Sumitomo Corporation of America, the US arm of the Japanese-based global trading giant, paid $77 million in cash and debt for Oxford Finance, according to the companies. The transaction, first announced January 29, was approved in a May 28 shareholder meeting.

Oxford, privately held and based in Alexandria, Va., has provided financing to life sciences tools companies, including US Genomics, Structural Genomix, and Cellular Genomics. The company said its has a total of 50 active portfolio companies.

Under the acquisition, Oxford will retain “operational independence,” as well as its current management team,” the companies said.


Filed under

The Scan

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Family Genetic Risk Score Linked to Diagnostic Trajectory in Psychiatric Disorders

Researchers in JAMA Psychiatry find ties between high or low family genetic risk scores and diagnostic stability or change in four major psychiatric disorders over time.

Study Questions Existence of Fetal Microbiome

A study appearing in Nature this week suggests that the reported fetal microbiome might be the result of sample contamination.

Fruit Fly Study Explores Gut Microbiome Effects on Circadian Rhythm

With gut microbiome and gene expression experiments, researchers in PNAS see signs that the microbiome contributes to circadian rhythm synchronicity and stability in fruit flies.