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Sequenom, Asterand, Rubicon Genomics, OncoMethylome, CombiMatrix, DNAvision

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Sequenom Granted Continued Listing on Nasdaq

Sequenom has received a letter from Nasdaq's Listing Qualifications Panel stating that it is now compliant with the minimum bid price requirement for continued listing on the Nasdaq National Market, the firm said this week.

The panel has also granted Sequenom an exception until August 15 to file its 10-Q with the Securities and Exchange Commission for the quarter ending June 30, 2006, evidencing shareholders' equity of at least $10 million, the company said.

According to Sequenom, the panel also acknowledged that the company met the requirement based on net proceeds from its $33 million stock placement last month.

In May, the firm received a letter from Nasdaq notifying it that it was not compliant with the stockholder equity listing requirement. Sequenom subsequently implemented a reverse stock split in an effort to regain Nasdaq compliance, along with the private stock sale.


Asterand and Rubicon Genomics to Co-Develop Cancer Diagnostics

Asterand said this week that it will partner with Rubicon Genomics to discover novel biomarkers for cancer diagnosis.

Under the non-exclusive agreement, Asterand will supply tissue and biofluid samples from its biorepository and its worldwide network of clinical collaborators, and Rubicon will study the samples using its MethylPlex technology to discover methylated DNA markers for cancer diagnosis and prognosis.

Asterand will be eligible to receive royalties on diagnostic tests developed under the collaboration. Further financial details were not disclosed.


OncoMethylome Prices IPO at 7.5 Euros per Share; Began Trading on Tuesday

OncoMethylome Sciences has priced its initial public offering at €7.50 ($9.44) per share and began trading on the Eurolist exchange in Brussels and Amsterdam Tuesday.

The company said that it expects to raise €22 million ($27.7 million) by issuing 2,933,334 new shares. It could raise up to €25 million if a 15 percent over-allotment option is exercised in full.

Approximately 12 percent of the shares will be allocated to retail investors in Belgium and The Netherlands and the remaining shares will be allocated to institutional investors in Belgium, The Netherlands, and elsewhere in Europe.

OncoMethylome Sciences, which is developing diagnostics based on DNA methylation patterns, will be listed under the ticker symbol ONCOB by Euronext Brussels and under the ticker symbol ONCOA by Euronext Amsterdam.

The company is based in Liège, Belgium, and has a development team in Amsterdam.


CombiMatrix Molecular Diagnostics to Launch Service in US in August

CombiMatrix Molecular Diagnostics this week said it plans to launch its first molecular diagnostic service in the US in August.

The service uses CMDX's Constitutional Genetic Array Test, which can genetically identify more than 50 "common" genetic disorders, including developmental disorders. The service is already sold in Europe through Paris-based Array Genomics.

CMDX said it's in the "final phases" of internal human and clinical validation.

In March, CMDX and Array Genomics said they plan to co-develop and co-market a series of comparative genomic hybridization microarrays for diagnosing genetic anomalies associated with mental retardation, a developmental disorder.

Matt Watson, CEO of CMDX, said the subsidiary is "actively developing further tests based on both our oligo and BAC capabilities that augment our microarray portfolio and over the next three quarters, we have plans to launch three to five additional products into the molecular diagnostics market."


DNAvision Upgrades Its Affy System to Offer Custom SNP Genotyping

DNAVision upgraded one of its GeneChip systems with Affymetrix's new GeneChip 3000 targeted genotyping system for its custom genotyping services, the company said last week.

According to DNAVision's chief executive officer, Jean-Pol Detiffe, the new system makes the company the first full-service pharmacogenomic laboratory to provide this service in Europe.

The GeneChip scanner incorporates MIP and Universal Tag technologies to allow flexible multiplexing from 1,500 to 50,000 SNPs per individual assay, DNAVision said in a statement.

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The Scan

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Also of Concern to WHO

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Test for Them All

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PNAS Papers on Oral Microbiome Evolution, Snake Toxins, Transcription Factor Binding

In PNAS this week: evolution of oral microbiomes among hominids, comparative genomic analysis of snake toxins, and more.