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Genedata, WIPO, Teranode, InforSense, Geospiza, SciNova, UC Santa Barbara, GeneticXchange

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Genedata and Singapore Cancer Center Collaborate on Cancer Diagnostics

Genedata said last week that the National Cancer Center Singapore (NCCS) has licensed its Expressionist microarray analysis software system as part of a collaborative project on cancer diagnostics.

Researchers at the NCCS will use the software to identify minimal sets of diagnostic marker genes for classifying tissues and cancer types into subclasses and to identify the function of genes involved in tumor development and progression.

 

WIPO Asked to Convene Meeting on Open and Collaborative Projects

An open letter issued July 7 requests that Kamil Idris, the director general of the World Intellectual Property Organization, convene a meeting in 2004 to examine appropriate IP policies for “open and collaborative projects to create public goods.”

The letter, available from the Consumer Project on Technology website (http://www.cptech.org/ip/wipo/kamil-idris-7july2003.pdf), is signed by 63 people, including Nobelist Sir John Sulston, Tim Hubbard of the Sanger Institute, Michael Eisen of LBNL, OSI co-founder Bruce Perens, OSI president Eric Raymond, GNU project founder Richard Stallman, and consumer advocate Ralph Nader.

As examples of successful open collaborative projects that could be discussed at the proposed meeting, the signers suggest free/open software projects, the World Wide Web, the Human Genome Project, the SNP Consortium, and open-access scientific journals, among others.

“These projects are extremely important, and they raise profound questions regarding appropriate intellectual property policies. They also provide evidence that one can achieve a high level of innovation in some areas of the modern economy without intellectual property protection, and indeed excessive, unbalanced, or poorly designed intellectual property protections may be counter-productive,” the letter states.

 

Teranode Licenses Two Technologies from the University of Washington

Teranode, a bioinformatics startup based in Seattle, has licensed two technologies developed at the University of Washington: Labscape, for data collection and analysis; and JSim, for simulating biological systems.

Teranode has strong ties to UW. Its CEO, Joseph Duncan, was previously chief of operations and information technology at UW’s Cell Systems Initiative (CSI), and COO Neil Fanger was formerly on the CSI staff. Labscape was invented by Larry Arnstein, a former professor of computer science and engineering at UW who is now CTO at Teranode, and JSim was developed in UW’s National Simulation Resource Facility under the direction of Zheng Li, CSO and founder of Teranode.

Labscape forms the foundation for Teranode’s TeraLab product, an electronic laboratory assistant that helps researchers gather and organize data, and analyze and predict results. The company plans to further develop JSim as part of a commercial product called TeraSim.

 

Fujitsu to Distribute InforSense Software

London-based InforSense has signed a distribution agreement with Fujitsu of Tokyo to distribute its forthcoming Kensington Discovery Station in Japan.

The Kensington Discovery Station is the desktop version of the company’s Kensington Discovery Edition enterprise platform.

Fujitsu will also provide direct technical support within Japan for Discovery Station customers.

“By incorporating the Discovery Station software with our wide range of Fujitsu software, hardware, and services, we can provide our life science customers with state-of-the-art discovery solutions,” said Shunji Matsumoto, manager, BioIT Laboratory for Fujitsu.

 

Geospiza to Host Bioinformatics Education Conference

Geospiza — with support from the University of North Carolina, Sun Microsystems, and the National Science Foundation’s Division of Undergraduate Education — will host a conference to address the uses of bioinformatics in biology education, Oct. 17-18 at the Sun Microsystems North Carolina Research Triangle Center of Excellence in Bioinformatics and Computational Biology.

“Although bioinformatics is an integral part of modern biological research, bioinformatics applications and databases see little use in the undergraduate biology curriculum. This has contributed to a growing technology gap between computational biologists and bench researchers,” according to a company statement.

The conference is expected to address this problem by highlighting ways for professors to introduce and include bioinformatics as a standard part of every biology course.

Further information is available here: http://www.geospiza.com/outreach/bio21.

 

SciNova to Develop Protein Structure Software for AstraZeneca

SciNova of Pune, India, said it has been tapped to develop custom software for the Bangalore, India-based AstraZeneca Research Foundation India to elucidate the structure of proteins based on NMR and mass spec data using a machine learning approach.

SciNova said it would retain rights to market the product in the international market once it is developed.

AstraZeneca Research Foundation India is endowed by AstraZeneca Plc, UK, and registered as a non-profit society in the state of Karnataka, India.

 

Philly Forms a Bioinformatics Alliance

BioAdvance, the Biotechnology Greenhouse of Southeastern Pennsylvania, has committed $500,000 to launch the Greater Philadelphia Bioinformatics Alliance as part of a $2.5 million commitment to support bioinformatics-related activities in the region.

The alliance is expected to strengthen the relationships “between the large and diverse sources of bioinformatics-related expertise of Philadelphia’s universities and research institutions and the growing need for advanced bioinformatics resources in the region’s pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies.”

The founding institutions of the alliance are the University of Pennsylvania, Drexel University, Temple University, Thomas Jefferson University, University of the Sciences in Philadelphia, Penn State at Great Valley, Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, Fox Chase Cancer Research Center, and the Wistar Institute.

 

UC Santa Barbara Wins $2M Contribution for Systems Biology

The University of California, Santa Barbara, received a philanthropic gift of $2 million from UCSB Chemical Engineering professor Duncan Mellichamp and his wife, Suzanne, to fund four endowed chairs devoted to advancing systems biology research at the university.

The Mellichamp chairs will be awarded as a group to top faculty for a period of up to 15 years and then reallocated to a different area following a campus-wide call for proposals.

 

Amersham Partners with GeneticXchange on Data-Integration Tool

Amersham Biosciences and GeneticXchange said last week that they have co-developed a platform to help researchers integrate lab-generated data with legacy, public, third party, and clinical data.

The platform brings together Amersham’s Scierra Laboratory Workflow System and GeneticXchange’s discoveryHub data-integration middleware.

The product will be available during the current quarter, and Amersham will sell it worldwide.

Filed under

The Scan

PNAS Papers on Rat Clues to Human Migration, Thyroid Cancer, PolyG-DS

In PNAS this week: ancient rat genome analysis gives hints to human migrations, WDR77 gene mutations in thyroid cancer, and more.

Purnell Choppin Dies

Purnell Choppin, a virologist who led the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, has died at 91, according to the Washington Post.

Effectiveness May Decline, Data From Israel Suggests

The New York Times reports that new Israeli data suggests a decline in Pfizer-BioNTech SARS-CoV-2 vaccine effectiveness against Delta variant infection, though protection against severe disease remains high.

To See Future Risk

Slate looks into the use of polygenic risk scores in embryo screening.