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Monogram BioSciences, Qatar Center, Illumina, Reveo, U Wash, Sequenom, Orion Genomics, Correction

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HIV Tests Drive 32-Percent Q1 Revenue Growth for Monogram

Monogram BioSciences this week reported a 32-percent increase in first-quarter revenue to $13.2 million from $10 million in the year-ago period.

Revenues for the quarter ended March 31 included $12.2 million derived from sales of the company's HIV testing products, a 73-percent increase from $8.9 million in HIV product revenues during the first quarter of 2005.

An ongoing collaboration with Pfizer (see story, this issue ELENA: LINK) represents another major revenue source for Monogram, said Alf Merriweather, the company's CFO. "The driving factor — as it has been for the last two or three quarters — was Pfizer's phase 3 trial of Maraviroc, where our tests are being used to screen and monitor patients," he said.

The company had a net loss of $3.4 million, or $0.03 per common share, in the first quarter of this year, versus a net loss of $7.4 million, or $0.06 per common share, for the first quarter of 2005.

Monogram spent $4.6 million on research and development during the recent quarter, up from $4 million in the first quarter of 2005.

As of March 31, the company had $67 million in cash, cash equivalents, and short-term investments.


Qatar Center to Use Illumina Genotyping Platform to Study Arabian Gulf Region Founder Populations

Illumina said this week that the genetic facility at the Shafallah Center for Children with Special Needs in Doha, Qatar, has installed an Illumina BeadLab genotyping platform.

The Shafallah Center will use the BeadLab as part of its research on rare autosomal recessive diseases as well as complex diseases such as diabetes, Illumina said.

All disease research at the facility will involve the collection and analysis of clinical, genetic, and family history data. The Shafallah Genetics Medical Center will have access to samples from founder populations indigenous to the Persian Gulf region, Illumina said.

Financial terms were not disclosed.


Reveo, U Wash to Co-Develop Portable DNA Sequencer

Reveo, an R&D firm based in Elmsford, NY, said this week that it is partnering with the University of Washington to develop a portable DNA sequencer based on nanoprobe arrays.

Reveo said that the invention is already covered by several issued and pending patents.

Babak Parviz, director of the Nanosystems Laboratory and a faculty member in the Department of Electrical Engineering at the University of Washington, will lead the university's participation in the project.

Reveo did not provide a timeline for commercializing the technology.


Sequenom's Q1 Revenues Surge, Losses Halved

Sequenom last week reported a 61-percent jump in first-quarter revenues and a dramatic reduction in net losses.

For the quarter ended March 31, Sequenom's revenues increased to $6.9 million from $4.3 million in the first quarter of 2005.

The company's net loss for the first quarter was $3.7 million, or $.09 per share, compared to $7.4 million, or $.19 per share for the first quarter of 2005.

Sequenom cut its R&D spending to $2.5 million from $3.3 million in the first quarter of 2005.

On March 31, the company had available cash and short-term investments of $2.9 million.


Orion Genomics to Use Genomics Collaborative's Tissue Samples for Cancer Biomarker Discovery

Genomics Collaborative, a division of SeraCare Life Sciences, said last week that it will provide Orion Genomics with annotated clinical tumor tissue specimens for use in Orion's cancer biomarker discovery and validation program.

Orion Genomics, a developer of DNA-methylation-based molecular diagnostics, will screen the tissue samples to discover and validate epigenetic biomarkers that are indicative of the presence and stage of disease, Genomics Collaborative said.

The deal is the second procurement agreement between the two firms.

Additional terms were not disclosed.


Correction

In last week's Pharmacogenomics Reporter, the story "Driven by Medicare Coverage for Oncotype Dx, Genomic Health's Q1 Revenues Soar, Loss Narrows," contained several errors. The story has been updated with the correct information, and can be found here. The original version should have reported that 16 percent of test services delivered involved Medicare patients, the company is expanding its sales force by 10, the company had cash and equivalents of $17.9 million on March 31, the company recognized 900,000 of contract revenue from research with Sanofi Aventis and Bristol-Myers Squibb during the quarter, and Medicare represented half of product revenue for the quarter.

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